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Umbrella

Umbrella

The major new novel by the author of Great Apes, How the Dead Live and The Book of Dave

Usually ships 4-6 weeks – This is an indent title (internationally sourced to order).

Quick Reference

ISBN 9781408820148
Published 1 August 2012 by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Format Hardback
Author(s) By Self, Will

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Full details for this title

ISBN-13 9781408820148
ISBN-10 1408820145
Stock Available
Status Indent title (internationally sourced), usually ships 4-6 weeks
Publisher Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Imprint Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publication Date 1 August 2012
International Publication Date 16 August 2012
Publication Country United Kingdom United Kingdom
Format Hardback
Author(s) By Self, Will
Category Award Winning
Fiction
Modern Fiction
Interest Age All ages
Reading Age All ages
Library of Congress Epidemic encephalitis - Complications, Psychiatrists - England, Coma - Patients - Treatment
NBS Text General & Literary Fiction
ONIX Text General/trade
Number of Pages 416
Dimensions Width: 153mm
Height: 216mm
Weight 678g
Dewey Code 823.92
Catalogue Code 280905

Description of this Book

A brother is as easily forgotten as an umbrella. James Joyce, Ulysses Recently having abandoned his RD Laing-influenced experiment in running a therapeutic community - the so-called Concept House in Willesden - maverick psychiatrist Zack Busner arrives at Friern Hospital, a vast Victorian mental asylum in North London, under a professional and a marital cloud. He has every intention of avoiding controversy, but then he encounters Audrey Dearth, a working-class girl from Fulham born in 1890 who has been immured in Friern for decades. A socialist, a feminist and a munitions worker at the Woolwich Arsenal, Audrey fell victim to the encephalitis lethargica epidemic at the end of the First World War and, like one of the subjects in Oliver Sacks' Awakenings, has been in a coma ever since. Realising that Audrey is just one of a number of post-encephalitics scattered throughout the asylum, Busner becomes involved in an attempt to bring them back to life - with wholly unforeseen consequences. Is Audrey's diseased brain in its nightmarish compulsion a microcosm of the technological revolutions of the twentieth century? And if Audrey is ill at all - perhaps her illness is only modernity itself? And what of Audrey's two brothers, Stanley and Albert: at the time she fell ill, Stanley was missing presumed dead on the Western Front, while Albert was in charge of the Arsenal itself, a coming man in the Imperial Civil Service. Now, fifty years later, when Audrey awakes from her pathological swoon, which brother is it who remains alive? Radical in its conception, uncompromising in its style, Umbrella is Will Self's most extravagant and imaginative exercise in speculative fiction to date.

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Awards, Reviews & Star Ratings

Awards Shortlisted for Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2012.
NZ Review In these culturally straitened times few writers would have the artistic effrontery to offer us a novel as daring, exuberant and richly dense as Umbrella. Will Self has carried the Modernist challenge into the twenty-first century, and worked a wonder John Banville Umbrella is his best book yet ... It makes new for today the lessons taught by the morals of Catch 22, Slaughterhouse Five, The Tin Drum, also Marquez's Chronicle of a Death Foretold Alasdair Gray Self has never been shortlisted for the Booker, but Umbrella is such a linguistically adept, emotionally subtle and ethically complex novel that this could and should be his year Guardian

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Author's Bio

Will Self is the author of many novels and books of non-fiction, including How the Dead Live, which was shortlisted for the Whitbread Novel of the Year 2002 and The Butt, winner of the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction 2008. He lives in South London.

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