Nicholas Blincoe Burning Paris

ISBN 13: 9780340734681

Burning Paris

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9780340734681: Burning Paris
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When James Beddoes, a former financial journalist, moves to Paris, it is ostensibly to write a novel based on the diaries of Paul-Antoine Brunel, a French lieutenant who became a leader of the Paris Commune during the Siege of Paris in 1870. But James is also in Paris to pursue a Frenchwoman, Flavie, whom he met at a party and with whom he has become infatuated. Although it soon becomes clear that Flavie is gay, James nonetheless becomes drawn into her volatile emotional relationships, all the while secretly hoping that he can change her mind. And in parallel, amid the political struggles and the battles of the Paris Siege, another love story is unfolding - between Brunel and Babette, a married restaurateur. But when James follows Flavie to Palestine, and as the Paris Siege intensifies, all four protagonists are brought face to face with the brutal reality of civil war.

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Review:

A profound romance about the end of romanticism, juxtaposed with a fractured tale of modern love. (Time Out)

Beside his intellect, Blincoe's other great strength as a novelist is his way with plots ... [He] carries all this off with the sophistication of a crime writer, introducing twists so subtly that you might not notice the world has changed before it's too late. (Daily Telegraph)

Impressively complex ... Blincoe handles his historical flicker-book deftly and reveals himself as a writer of freshly aphoristic skill. (Scotland on Sunday)

A heady combination of love, war and a grand narrative scheme. Burning Paris is a highly topical novel and the historical detail is superb (Literary Review)

Blincoe handles both the period setting and the metafictional fun with flair and assurance. [He] writes pacy prose ... provoking and engaging. (Sam Thompson, Guardian)

Blincoe evokes the turbulence of these terrible months of siege, hunger and bloodshed in Paris exceptionally well ... clever [and] ambitious (Scotsman)

Burning Paris works inventively on several levels. It is an engaging chronicle of human interaction and a docudrama firmly rooted in carefully observed social history. The Palestinian sieges are graphically evoked in the style of vivid front-line journalism...his observation of modern life in cosmopolitan Paris is sharp, shrewd and graphic, qualities which also define his sprightly style. (David Coward, TLS)

Blincoe deftly echoes Beddoes' turmoil with description of Brunel's own loves and affairs, set against the volatile background of the 'Fall of Paris'. This is a searing, epic tale of love and war. (Attitude)

Blincoe evokes the turbulence of these terrible months of siege, hunger and bloodshed in Paris exceptionally well...in this clever, ambitious, and demanding novel. (Allan Massie, The Scotsman)

Blincoe handles his historical flicker-book deftly, and reveals himself as a writer of freshly aphoristic skill...With Burning Paris, he has dreamt his fiction into a place where desire and politics, history and farce, explode into new and spectacular seriousness. (Brian Dillon, Scotland on Sunday)

Book Description:

Nicholas Blincoe's breakout novel: a rich dramatic feast of love and war in 19th-century France - which finds its reflection in 21st-century Paris and Palestine.

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9780340734698: Burning Paris

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ISBN 10:  0340734698 ISBN 13:  9780340734698
Publisher: Sceptre, 2005
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