The Modern Library - the 200 best novels in English since 1950
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Flaubert’s Parrot by Julian Barnes

Three characters jostle for the part of leading man in this extraordinary blend of tomfoolery and high seriousness. Flaubert, the great French writer, is the subject of a biography by Dr. Braithwaite, the narrator of this novel. The playful presence of Barnes, the author, is added to the mix, his encyclopaedic intelligence surprising the reader into laughter or astonishment.
Julian Barnes was born in Leicester.

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Flaubert’s Parrot by Julian Barnes