Life Class

Life Class

Book - 2007
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Penguin Putnam
Life Class is the first novel in Pat Barker's Life Class Trilogy - a powerful and unforgettable story of art and war Spring, 1914. The students at the Slade School of Art gather in Henry Tonks's studio for his life-drawing class. But for Paul Tarrant the class is troubling, underscoring his own uncertainty about making a mark on the world. When war breaks out and the army won't take Paul, he enlists in the Belgian Red Cross just as he and fellow student Elinor Brooke admit their feelings for one another. Amidst the devastation in Ypres, Paul comes to see the world anew - but have his experiences changed him completely? 'Triumphant, shattering, inspiring' The Times 'Barker writes as brilliantly as ever . . . with great tenderness and insight she conveys a wartime world turned upside down'Independent on Sunday 'Vigorous, masterly, gripping' Penelope Lively, Independent 'Extraordinarily powerful' Sunday Telegraph

Gardners
Paul Tarrant's life as a volunteer for the Belgian Red Cross is a world away from his days at the Slade School of Art. The longer he remains in Ypres, the greater the distance between himself and home becomes, and by the time he returns, Paul must confront the fact that life, and love, will never be the same again.

Blackwell North Amer
It is the spring of 1914 and a group of young students at the Slade School of Art have gathered in Henry Tonks's studio for a life-drawing class. Paul Tarrant, frustrated by his lack of progress, is easily distracted by an intriguing fellow student, Elinor Brooke. But when Kit Neville - himself not long out of the Slade but already a well-known painter - makes it clear that he, too, is attracted to Elinor, Paul withdraws into a passionate affair with an artist's model, ignoring the complications and dangers presented by her estranged husband. As spring turns to summer, Paul and Elinor each reach a crisis in their relationships until finally, in the first few days of war, they turn to each other.
Paul's new life as a volunteer for the Belgian Red Cross is a world away from his days at the Slade. As he tends to the mutilated, dying soldiers from the front line, he often thinks of Elinor and of the life-drawing class, but the longer he remains in Ypres, the greater the distance between himself and home becomes. By the time he returns, Paul must confront not only the overwhelming, perhaps impossible challenge of how to express all that he has seen and experienced, but also the fact that life, and love, will never be the same for him again. Life Class is an unforgettable picture of young people learning the ordinary lessons of early adulthood in the midst of extraordinary times.

Publisher: London : Penguin, 2007
Description: 248 p. ; 24 cm
ISBN: 9780241142974
0241142970
Branch Call Number: Bark

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uncommonreader
Oct 01, 2015

Again, Barker writes masterfully about WW I. One theme is the extent to which one should depict the terrors of war; another is Elinor's refusal to engage war and to focus on painting what one loves rather that what is being destroyed. The novel depicts the impact of war on the emotional lives of its characters.

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maipenrai
Aug 10, 2013

*** 1/2 stars. In this novel, Pat Barker returns to her most renowned subject: the devastation and psychic damage wrought by WWI on all levels of British society. In the spring of 1914, a group of young students gather in an art studio for a life-drawing class. A group of students at the Slade School of Art have gathered for a life-drawing class. Paul Tarrant is easily distracted by an intriguing fellow student, Elinor Brooke, but Kit Neville - himself not long out of the Slade but already a well-known painter - makes it clear that he, too, is attracted to Elinor. Paul's new life as a volunteer for the Belgian Red Cross is a world away from his days at the Slade. He must confront the fact that life, and love, will never be the same again. Ms. Barker has the marvelous ability to recreate the style of the great British authors of the early 20th century. If you did not know that the book is a work of new fiction, you would swear the author endured the pain of WWI herself. Recommend

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nadian May 16, 2012

nadian thinks this title is suitable for 17 years and over

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