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Publisher's Summary

Born to elegant but frivolous parents, Harriet grows up ignored and unguided, and retains a curious innocence that neither her marriage to Freddie Lytton, nor her friendship with the beautiful Tessa can dispel. Freddie is far older than she is - a companion rather than a lover - and slightly disapproving of Tessa and her irresponsible, attractive husband, Jack. Yet all four are bound together: by their backgrounds, their children, by Harriet’s unspoken feelings for Jack and by the tragedy that lies in wait for all of them.

©1991 Anita Brookner (P)2014 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The Late Great Ms. Brookner

Please don't take my word for it--I'm a Brookner fan and am happy to listen to anything she's written. No real story? No problem. Lots of brilliant moments and profound insights. Similar to her other books? Well, why else would I read it? Essentially depressing? The truth often is. The narration is exceptional and the book weaves Brookner's spell as always.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Boring.

What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

The narrator did her best with the material. She sounded bored; it was a boring book.

Any additional comments?

Not worth the credit.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Beautifully written. Genuine heartfelt performance

Anita Brookner makes writing beautiful, evocative novels look easy, but relatively few manage to achieve the level of excellence that she does with every book she writes. Combine Brooker's writing with Prunella Scales' narration and you can do nothing but sit back in awe...

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • sigrun
  • Stavanger, Norway
  • 06-22-12

From the inside

Would you listen to A Closed Eye again? Why?

I would love to reread this book, it's a simple but at the same time very intriguing story. It is as if Brookner is inside her characters, an inside which is rather blank except for chilling winds of emptiness.

What other book might you compare A Closed Eye to and why?

I think this is a typical Brookner novel, in a positive way.

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Prunella Scales?

Anyone, Scales is terrible at this, she does not manage to give the characters in the story a personal voice.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes

3 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Lucy Frank
  • 12-13-17

A subtle, unsettling and compelling book.

I bought this book on the off chance. I’d never read Brookner before but I’m now a fan. Her writing is bleak and poignant while also being really witty.. Her characters are all quietly struggling, forced to make compromises and frequently completely isolated from each other. They make their own private hell which they then unintentionally inflict on their children. Prunella Scales is a brilliant reader - she captures the strained, stiff upper lip tones of the characters as well as Brookner’s dry humour. Highly recommended!