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"Do you know what the last four things are? In the
Christian catechism they are Death, Judgment, Heaven
and Hell. But in our secular age they should perhaps be
changed. I suggest - First Love, Friendship, Betrayal
and Death . . . These also happen to be the staples of
the novelist. Is that the sort of thing you want?"'

Thus Cornelius Marten asks the researcher who turns up one night
at his house. Cornelius has forgotten his invitation to the young
man. But the young woman who accompanies him seems strangely
familiar. Cornelius is flattered by their attention. He had thought
himself almost forgotten; his great works neglected. And Cornelius,
monstrously selfish, whisky glass constantly in hand, his mind
shifting between past and present, finds that his mysterious guests
release memories and truths he had preferred to forget.

The stories which follow Four Last Things complement and explore
some of the same themes: the poet who has published only one
poem; a bizarre stag night; a child who is haunted by his encounter
with the adult world of a religious maniac; a dreamed murder;
an academic who stirs the ghost of Byron in modern Venice;
the shifts and deceptions of language and memory; and in a great
jazzman's last wordless hurrah, a final flowering of beauty.
This irresistibly powerful volume by the author of The Good
Republic, Leporello and The Contract confirms William Palmer as
one of our finest writers.

Four last things - William Palmer

9780099584339
£ 8.69
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Title
Four last things
Author
William Palmer
format
Paperback / softback
Publisher
Vintage
Language
English
UK Publication Date
20130204

"Do you know what the last four things are? In the
Christian catechism they are Death, Judgment, Heaven
and Hell. But in our secular age they should perhaps be
changed. I suggest - First Love, Friendship, Betrayal
and Death . . . These also happen to be the staples of
the novelist. Is that the sort of thing you want?"'

Thus Cornelius Marten asks the researcher who turns up one night
at his house. Cornelius has forgotten his invitation to the young
man. But the young woman who accompanies him seems strangely
familiar. Cornelius is flattered by their attention. He had thought
himself almost forgotten; his great works neglected. And Cornelius,
monstrously selfish, whisky glass constantly in hand, his mind
shifting between past and present, finds that his mysterious guests
release memories and truths he had preferred to forget.

The stories which follow Four Last Things complement and explore
some of the same themes: the poet who has published only one
poem; a bizarre stag night; a child who is haunted by his encounter
with the adult world of a religious maniac; a dreamed murder;
an academic who stirs the ghost of Byron in modern Venice;
the shifts and deceptions of language and memory; and in a great
jazzman's last wordless hurrah, a final flowering of beauty.
This irresistibly powerful volume by the author of The Good
Republic, Leporello and The Contract confirms William Palmer as
one of our finest writers.

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William Palmer is the author of five novels, The Good Republic, Leporello, The Contract, The Pardon of Saint Anne and The India House, and a collection of short stories, Four Last Things. He was awarded a Travelling Scholarship by the Society of Authors in 1997. A book of poems, The Island Rescue, won the Collection Prize at the Listowel Writers' Week festival in Ireland in 2006. He reviews regularly for the Independent and other journals. He lives in south-west London.

http://www.williampalmer.info/

Type
BOOK
Edition
Reprint
Country of Publication
England
Number of Pages
320

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