Three powerful novels from the Man Booker Prize–winning British novelist of This Sporting Life and “an absorbing writer” (The New Yorker).
The son of a coal miner who went on to play professionally in the rugby league, British author David Storey drew heavily on his own background for his debut novel, This Sporting Life, which won the 1960 Macmillan Fiction Award and was made into a film with Richard Harris. “The leading novelist of his generation,” Storey was also a playwright and screenwriter, going on to win the Man Booker Prize for his novel, Saville (The Daily Telegraph). The collected fiction gathered here explores madness, romantic obsession, adolescent yearning, and class divisions with Storey’s characteristic “understanding of people and society” (The Times Literary Supplement).
A Serious Man: Richard Fenchurch has had a long, successful career as a playwright, painter, and novelist. But at sixty-five, he is coming apart at the seams. His married daughter, Harriet, moves him from his squalid London flat to his ancestral mansion. Home again with ghosts all around, Fenchurch ruminates on past loves and choices, while struggling to maintain his freedom and sanity.
“This spellbinding giant of a book is dashing, hectic, complex, sometimes almost wickedly aimless and terrifying. It reads like a wild animal flexing its muscles. . . . An electrifying success.” —The Mail on Sunday
A Temporary Life: As his wife wastes away in a hospital, sinking deeper and deeper into a terrifying and incomprehensible madness, Colin Freestone tries to make sense of what his life has become. Having moved to Yvonne’s hometown in northern England for her psychiatric care, he teaches art at a second-rate college headed by a nutrition-crazed dean. He makes friends and meets women, but nothing can distract him from the fact that his wife is slowly dying and he is powerless to stop it.
“A triumph . . . bitter, enriching.” —The New York Times
A Prodigal Child: Desperate to escape the poverty of his family and his drunken father who works as a farmhand, Bryan goes to live with the childless Fay Corrigan at her posh home in town during the week, while attending a prep school that she pays for. But Bryan soon feels a growing chasm between his new life and the world he left behind. And his mounting jealous-erotic obsession with the much-older Fay leads to actions—and consequences—that will reverberate for years to come.
“Quiet but telling drama, intense observation.” —Penelope Lively