Adrian Turpin

Time To Grow Up

The Sense of an Ending

By

Jonathan Cape 160pp £12.99 order from our bookshop

The title of Julian Barnes’s new novel is a good one but it is not original. In 1967 the literary critic Frank Kermode published The Sense of an Ending, a study of the relationship between time, fiction and apocalyptic thought. ‘At some very low level,’ wrote Kermode, ‘we all share certain fictions about time.’ By daring to regulate the flow of sand through the hourglass – speeding it up or even, on occasion, stopping it – stories defy the shapelessness of real time. They protect us from primordial chaos.

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