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Gerald Basil Edwards (1899–1976)

Autor/a de The Book of Ebenezer Le Page

1 obres 951 Membres 33 Ressenyes
Hi ha 1 un debat obert sobre aquest autor. Mira'l ara.

Sobre l'autor

Inclou aquests noms: Gerald B. Edwards, Gerald Basil Edwards

Inclou també: G. B. Edwards (1)

Obres de Gerald Basil Edwards

The Book of Ebenezer Le Page (1981) 951 exemplars


Coneixement comú

Data de naixement
Data de defunció
United Kingdom
Lloc de naixement
Vale, Guernsey, Channel Islands
Lloc de defunció
Weymouth, Dorset, England, UK



OT: Ebenezer Le Page a Folio Society Devotees (març 2023)
OT – Extraordinary Editions - The Book of Ebenezer Le Page a Folio Society Devotees (desembre 2022)


I can only agree with this beautiful review of this book:
I can't recommend this book highly enough. It is a real treaure - one of the best books I have ever read. It deserves to be widely known and hailed as a classic of 20th century.
The premise is, on the surface, not specially promising: an 80-year old man looks back on his life, which he has spent entirely on the island of Guernsey. But Ebenezer's story takes us to the very root of what it is to be human, what it is to love, suffer, enjoy simple pleasures, endure disappointments and loss, and all the while, retain the utmost dignity and humanity.
Ebenezer chronicles his life through the 2 world wars, the German occupation of Guernsey, and beyond. He watches, half amused, half sad, but without any self-pity, as the world around him changes, never for the better. His voice is utterly compelling, wickedly funny and truthful as he describes all the pretensions and absurdities of the people and situations he sees around him, and all the tragedies and the joys of life.
I urge you to read this book -it is heartbreakingly beautiful and you will never forget it. from
… (més)
Den85 | Hi ha 32 ressenyes més | Jan 3, 2024 |
For the past few weeks I have been spending my evenings with old Ebenezer at his kitchen table, listening to him reminiscing about the Guernsey of his childhood, about his friends and family, the people he liked and those he didn't, the changes wrought by World War I and then the German Occupation of the island, and the more recent invasion of tourists, modern housing, roads, cars and the dreaded T.V. Ebenezer contented himself without any of these mod cons. I travelled with him on foot or by island bus to visit vague relatives, in an attempt to find someone to inherit his house, greenhouses, land, the money stashed away under a board in the grandfather clock and the gold sovereigns buried in a tin beneath the apple tree. I cried with him, sometimes not at the things he said, but what he didn't say. And he made me laugh, for instance when he decided it was time for bed but hoped he wouldn't wake up in the morning and find himself dead.
Of course I didn't really listen to him; I was reading the three books he wrote when he found himself alone after his sister Tabitha died. But it felt as if I could hear his voice, with his quaint turns of speech,his humbleness and his determined attitude.
And then, what is remarkable, is realising that it is not Ebenezer writing at all, but the mysterious G.B. Edwards who has slid under the skin of this venerable and only slightly curmudgeonly Guernseyman.
This publication, by Extraordinary Editions, is very beautiful, with careful typesetting, an insightful introduction, a glossary of terms, and perfect illustrations by Charlie Buchanan. I thought at first that Tabitha looked too young, then turned the page to see that Ebenezer described her face as that of a young girl. I did notice a few minor flaws: uncomfortable word splits such as an-yone and re-ally, a font size mistake in the cascading first lines of one of the early chapters, and though Ebenezer says quite clearly that he wrote THE PROPERTY OF NEVILLE FALLA in capital letters, the dedication page has it hand-written in cursive. Well, there has to be an imperfection through which our soul can escape and fly to heaven. I'd like to meet Ebenezer up there.
… (més)
overthemoon | Hi ha 32 ressenyes més | Aug 28, 2023 |
The Book of Ebenezer Le Page

There is little I can add to the dozens of other reviews of this novel – the vast majority of them giving the highest praise to this work.

The reader has already read the theme – an old man recalling his life on the island of Guernsey during the 20th century. G.B. Edwards achieves a skilled narration, not in flowery language like a Lawrence Durrell, but through a superlative syntax combined with English Guernsey which never falters once in all the 398 pages of the novel. This is the achievement of the author. When his executor finally found a publisher, little editing was needed. Edwards was a skilled craftsman and perfectionist in his writing.

The tale he relates of a local island culture gradually succumbing to tourist modernity, leaving hardly an echo of once was, breaks your heart the more for how Edwards describes its slow metastasizing. Summer. Folks out on the beach where Ebenezer keeps his fishing boat. English people start lodging each year at a local home. From this soft tissue it grows.

The tragedy, the heartbreak is related in simple language, never overdone. Later in the novel, Ebenezer comes upon his friend whose wife has left. HIs friend is drunk, "and clung tighter to the wall (of breakwater). Why'd you hang onto the wall like that?'" asks Ebenezer. "It's company." his friend Raymond answers. If there is a heartbreaking passage, this is it.

Tragedy comes to friends. Ebenezer narrates the never-forgotten relationship with his deepest friend, Jim. Unexpectedly, Jim turns out to be a good solider when the war arrives. Jim can do every soldier thing superlatively except one. He cannot bring himself to be willing to bayonet another human being, enemy or not. When Jim’s leave is up and he is sent to the front, he is the first over the top. He is killed by bayonet.
Edwards relates this briefly, succinctly, nothing maudlin, and thus it reverberates, lingers, giving the reader what any fine novel does – thoughts and feelings days, weeks, months after it is read.

One note for readers of this review. There is a 2008 interview with Edward Chaney, the person to whom Edwards bequeathed his unpublished novel. Five years after the author’s death, Chaney was able to get Hamish Hamilton to publish it. Chaney relates how Edwards tore up the will his mother wrote, leaving him their house on Guernsey, fearing what Edward’s father might do if she did not. Alas, the father married his housekeeper and disinherited Gerald. Thus, Gerald B. Edwards died a lodger in one room near Weymouth, the closest point of the mainland to Guernsey. Here is a sad quote from that interview: “He visited Guernsey occasionally, as well as wilder shores of Wales and Cornwall, and then from his lodgings in Upwey, near Weymouth, struck out for the Orkneys, Shetlands and the Scilly Isles, only to return to his lodgings on each occasion a chastened man, having discovered that there was no escape from the modern world….”

Chaney quotes some of Edwards' poems. He quotes Edward’s view on religion – he believed in God, but praised all religions of the world, regardless of denomination, creed.

I could write much more about this novel, but the authors of the many other reviews have done better than I. Only to say: Thank you, Gerald B. Edwards. Thank you.
… (més)
forestormes | Hi ha 32 ressenyes més | May 4, 2023 |
In addition, Guernsey stamps issued in 2022 to celebrate a new edition
jon1lambert | Hi ha 32 ressenyes més | Oct 9, 2022 |



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½ 4.3

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