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The Book of Evidence de John Banville
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The Book of Evidence (1989 original; edició 2001)

de John Banville (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaConverses / Mencions
1,5442911,465 (3.67)1 / 96
Fiction. Literature. Mystery. HTML:

John Banville's stunning powers of mimicry are brilliantly on display in this engrossing novel, the darkly compelling confession of an improbable murderer.

Freddie Montgomery is a highly cultured man, a husband and father living the life of a dissolute exile on a Mediterranean island. When a debt comes due and his wife and child are held as collateral, he returns to Ireland to secure funds. That pursuit leads to murder. And here is his attempt to present evidence, not of his innocence, but of his life, of the events that lead to the murder he committed because he could. Like a hero out of Nabokov or Camus, Montgomery is a chillingly articulate, self-aware, and amoral being, whose humanity is painfully on display.

.… (més)
Membre:MissBCoffee
Títol:The Book of Evidence
Autors:John Banville (Autor)
Informació:Vintage (2001), Edition: Reprint, 219 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:
Etiquetes:Cap

Informació de l'obra

Llibre de l'evidència de John Banville (1989)

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    Athena de John Banville (CGlanovsky)
    CGlanovsky: Connected plots (Read Book of Evidence first).
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» Mira també 96 mencions

Es mostren 1-5 de 29 (següent | mostra-les totes)
3.5 stars ( )
  EllieBhurrut | Jan 24, 2024 |
I read my first Banville — his early novel Birchwood — back in 2019 and strangely retained almost nothing of it, except the idea that I didn't much dig it. Based on this nebulous impression I didn't read any more of the dude until now, which was dumb, because The Book of Evidence is as delicious an unreliable first-personer as you could wish for. You never know how much to believe of Freddie Montgomery's narrative, or his self-proclaimed Jekyll & Hydedom, but his voice is a tortuous, oblivious delight, his interactions with normals a font of ironic comedy. And now checking my spreadsheet I see I actually liked Birchwood, although not quite as much as this, so I'm 2 for 2 with Banville and ready for more! ( )
  yarb | Jan 13, 2024 |
Did not finish, unfortunately. Banville presented in this fairly early work, 1989, a (very) long monologue by criminal Freddy Montgomery to the chairman and jury of the court in which he is on trial. It is an ‘oratio pro domo’, of course, in which the cunning Freddy analyzes how things could have gone so wrong in his life. And he is clearly not just anyone, he openly philosophizes about evil and free will, and that occasionally produces great passages, such as this one: “By the way, leafing through my dictionary I am struck by the poverty of the language when it comes to naming or describing badness. Evil, wickedness, mischief, these words imply an agency, the conscious or at least active doing of wrong. They do not signify the bad in its inert, neutral, self-sustaining state. Then there are the adjectives: dreadful, heinous, execrable, vile, and so on. They are not so much descriptive as judgmental. They carry a weight of censorship mingled with fear. Isn't this a queer state of affairs? It makes me wonder. I ask myself if perhaps the thing itself—badness—does not exist at all, if these strangely vague and imprecise words are only a kind of ruse, a kind of elaborate cover for the fact that nothing is there. Or perhaps the words are an attempt to make it be there? Or, again, perhaps there is something, but the words invented it.”
It is clear that Banville with Freddy Montgomery has presented yet another variation of the unreliable narrator. Or maybe a variation on the theme of L’étranger (Camus), since Freddy is accused of a murder without motif. But, to be honest, I was only mildly interested. Freddy's flow of words was sometimes too much, and the many descriptive passages did not conform to the monologue form. In the words of Freddy himself: “None of this means anything. Anything of significance, that is. I am just amusing myself, musing, losing myself in a welter of words. For words in here are a form of luxury, of sensuousness, they are all we have been allowed to keep of the rich, wasteful world from which we are shut away.” ( )
  bookomaniac | Dec 8, 2023 |
Banville's protagonist recounts his crime in a roughly linear fashion, but important plot points (such as his wife being held for ransom) seem to be dropped as his account approaches his actual crime. The protagonist is pathetic, and knows it, and seems genuinely remorseful (although arguably he is more concerned with appearing remorseful). His account has a lot of fleeting, stray, perceptions, which perhaps reflects the world closing in on him. A lot of characters appear here, but are rather elliptically presented, and it is not really clear what exactly their deal is.

It is an interesting experiment, but it requires careful attention, perhaps more than I could give it. ( )
  jklugman | Nov 21, 2023 |
Banville is a well-known prize-winning Irish novelist and The Book of Evidence is delightfully well-written, but it comes across as a sort of exercise –the protagonist is a self-involved arrogant zip who kills a woman for the same reason that Meursault did. The difference is that Meursault was a reliable witness and Freddie Montgomery is not – ultimately we are bored. Banville's sentences are beautiful, though.

As an aside...there are two or three sentences that seem out of place in the first half of the book. They seem analogous to a trick used in the cinema where we are shown a few frames of something that hasn't happened yet. Two of the sentences mention blood on a woman's shoes. Unfortunately I can't figure out to what, exactly, they refer. Nobody ever has bloody shoes. ( )
  markm2315 | Jul 1, 2023 |
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Fiction. Literature. Mystery. HTML:

John Banville's stunning powers of mimicry are brilliantly on display in this engrossing novel, the darkly compelling confession of an improbable murderer.

Freddie Montgomery is a highly cultured man, a husband and father living the life of a dissolute exile on a Mediterranean island. When a debt comes due and his wife and child are held as collateral, he returns to Ireland to secure funds. That pursuit leads to murder. And here is his attempt to present evidence, not of his innocence, but of his life, of the events that lead to the murder he committed because he could. Like a hero out of Nabokov or Camus, Montgomery is a chillingly articulate, self-aware, and amoral being, whose humanity is painfully on display.

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