Additional Book Information
Series: New York Review Books
Publication Date: January 14, 2020
The Great Concert of the Night
Ultimately, Buckley’s novel is both very entertaining and very sad—a book of high artifice that feels true. Addictive, elegiac, and pristinely paced.
—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
Why isn’t Jonathan Buckley better known? His novel of love, death and melancholy comedy, The Great Concert of the Night, is captivating.
[O]ne reads this beautifully written book because the author provides food for thought with reflections on love, the imagination and death, laced with citations from Marcus Aurelius, Blaise Pascal and the Christian mystic Hildegard von Bingen. There is also a drolly comic side to the story . . .
—Bruce Boucher, The New York Times Book Review
[A]dmirable and frequently beautiful . . . aptly reflects the capriciousness of memory . . .
—Emily Bobrow, The Wall Street Journal
The Great Concert of the Night, Jonathan Buckley’s beguiling tenth novel, is . . . an occasion for speculation, reflection, distraction, and aimless wonder. . . . This superb novel generates that strangely familiar sensation that something wonderful has been revealed, momentarily.
What a pleasure to be immersed—lost really—in this elegant, erudite, seductive, and deeply moving chronicle of a sensibility and a life.
Buckley is a talented verbal painter, with a fine eye for detail.
—Mary Fitzgerald, New Statesman
This smart, witty novel by an undeservedly under-known writer embraces love, loss and a man’s obsession with his dead lover.
—The Sunday Times, "100 Best Books to Read This Summer"
Exactly why Buckley is not already revered and renowned as a novelist in the great European tradition remains a mystery that will perhaps only be addressed at that final godly hour when all the overlooked authors working in odd and antique modes will receive their just rewards. . . . The figure of Imogen—figured and refigured in descriptions of her various screen roles—remains fascinating throughout. She is entirely imaginary, utterly real and alive forever "in the perpetual present of the sentence, where nobody is alive and nobody dead."
—Ian Samson, The Times Literary Supplement