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The Space of Joy by John Fuller
  

The Space of Joy

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Shortlisted for the Costa Poetry Award 2007.

Costa Book Awards 2007 Judges' comment:
"Formally accomplished and moving in its precision."

Synopsis

The Space of Joy by John Fuller

The Space of Joy is a sequence of poems that recounts the endless desire for love (and the failures and compromises that accompany that desire) in a number of writers and musicians who fatally prioritise their art. It begins with Petrarch, who created great lyric poetry out of an impossible infatuation, and moves through Coleridge’s self-induced guilt within domestic happiness, Matthew Arnold’s disbelief in mutual love, Brahm’s self-delusion and the complexities of Wallace Stevens’s marriage. It so happens that both Brahms and Arnold found themselves contemplating their art and their lives in the small Swiss town of Thun, and it is Thun that provides the setting for the wonderful concluding poem of this collections in which Fuller thinks back to his own boyood and his parents' marriage.

If there is any resolution in this sequence of magnificently playful and thought-provoking poems, it is the conviction that while ‘poetry may be the only heaven we have’, it is life itself that must create the ‘space of joy’ which art wishes to celebrate.

Reviews

Fuller is a wonderfully skilled craftsman and the grace and elegance of his style is at the service of not only a sharp wit and intelligence, but a great depth of feeling * Sunday Telegraph * Sustained and deeply felt, it is unafraid to create 'The Space of Joy


* Arts & Book Review * A work of formal virtuosity * Guardian *


About the Author

John Fuller

John Fuller's latest collection of poetry, Ghosts, was shortlisted for the Whitbread Poetry Prize. He is also a respected novelist: his fiction includes Flying to Nowhere (1983), which won the Whitbread First Novel Award and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize for Fiction, Look Twice (1991), The Worm and the Star (1993) and A Skin Diary (1997). His books written for children include The Last Bid (1975) and The Extraordinary Wool Mill and Other Stories (1980). The Memoirs of Laetitia Horsepole, by Herself (2001), is a portrait of the eighteenth-century painter, philosopher and femme fatale.

John Fuller is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature. He lives in Oxford.

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Book Info

Publication date

2nd November 2006

Author

John Fuller

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    recommendations

Publisher

Vintage

Format

Paperback
96 pages

Categories

Literary Fiction
All Shortlists and Winners
eBook Favourites

Literary studies: poetry & poets

ISBN

9780701181109

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