Winter Journal, Paperback Book
5 out of 5 (1 rating)


'You think it will never happen to you, that it cannot happen to you, that you are the only person world to whom none of these things will ever happen, and then, one by one, they all begin to happen to you, in the same way they happen to everyone else.' In Winter Journal, Paul Auster moves through the events of his life in a series of memories grasped from the point of view of his life now: playing baseball as a teenager; participating in the anti-Vietnam demonstrations at Columbia University; seeking out prostitutes in Paris, almost killing his second wife and child in a car accident; falling in and out of live with his first wife; the 'scalding, epiphanic moment of clarity' in 1978 that set him on a new course as a writer.

Winter Journal is a poignant memoir of ageing and memory, written with all the characteristic subtlety, imagination and insight that readers of Paul Auster have come to cherish. "An examination of the emotions of a man growing old ...this book has much to recommend it, and Auster is unsparingly honest about himself." (Financial Times).


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Autobiography: literary
  • ISBN: 9780571283248

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In which Paul Auster demonstrates that, at 64, he is totally in control of his craft. A masterly, and engrossing account of what should be quite personal material not necessarily interesting to anyone outside his family. I found it hard to put down. This is an non linear memoir, not quite autobiography, but more his memories of significant parts of his life. The section where he describes every address he's ever lived at, is particularly moving. As are the recollections of his mother who sounds like an enormous influence (his father, not so much). There is a lot of honestly in there as well, although whether some of the people mentioned, such as his first wife, would necessarily appreciate that honesty, is another matter. Auster's fiction has not been as sharp, at least for me, as when at is peak (which for me is about 10 years ago at the time of The Brooklyn Follies, The Book of Illusions and Oracle Night). Perhaps he will never write outstanding fiction again. But as an autobiographer he's outstanding. I shall now go and buy the companion volume, Notes From The Interior

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