According to Mark, Paperback Book

According to Mark Paperback

Part of the Penguin Modern Classics series

5 out of 5 (1 rating)


A respected literary biographer, Mark is working on the life of Gilbert Strong - a writer about whom he thinks he knows everything.

Happily married, and apparently dedicated to a life of letters, he nevertheless falls in love with Strong's granddaughter Carrie, a vague and unsophisticated young woman more interested in bedding plants than books or passion.

As Mark's obsessions develop over a hot, complicated summer, he begins to understand that nothing is ever what it seems; not Gilbert Strong, and certainly not himself.According to Mark is a witty and moving look at love, literature and the dangers of middle-aged folly.


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This is a very interesting and thought-provoking novel. On one level it tells the story of a biographer's mid-life crisis, but it addresses deeper questions about the nature of experience, memory, truth and fiction, as the writer's experiences, thoughts and perceptions are contrasted with those of his subject, and he begins to question how his own life will be remembered. A rewarding book reminiscent of A.S. Byatt (I was reminded of elements of Possession and The Biographer's Tale, but this book preceded both of those).

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