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A Telegraph and Evening Standard Book of the Year
From the acclaimed writer and critic Geoff Dyer, an extremely funny scene-by-scene analysis of Where Eagles Dare - published as the film reaches its 50th anniversary
A thrilling Alpine adventure starring a magnificent, bleary-eyed Richard Burton and a coolly anachronistic Clint Eastwood, Where Eagles Dare is the apex of 1960s war movies, by turns enjoyable and preposterous. 'Broadsword Calling Danny Boy' is Geoff Dyer's tribute to the film he has loved since childhood: an analysis taking us from its snowy, Teutonic opening credits to its vertigo-inducing climax. For those who have not even seen Where Eagles Dare, this book is a comic tour-de-force of criticism. But for the film's legions of fans, whose hearts will always belong to Ron Goodwin's theme tune, it will be the fulfilment of a dream.
'Geoff Dyer's funniest book yet. Who else would work in Martha Gellhorn on the first page of a book on the film Where Eagles Dare?' Michael Ondaatje
'One of our greatest living critics, not of the arts but of life itself, and one of our most original writers' Kathryn Schulz, New York Magazine
Welcome to the world of Dyer! Gripped by indecision at every turn, he agonises over where to settle down to write, whether or not he should move in with his almost-girlfriend, and even which edition of Lawrence's poems to pack in his rucksack.
In Out of Sheer Rage Dyer travels the world, providing fascinating insights into Lawrence's life and the continuing value of his work - and into the myriad anxieties that define the life of a writer.
Another city, another assignment: this time on the banks of the Ganges in Varanasi. Amid the crowds, ghats and chaos of India's holiest Hindu city, a different kind of transformation lies in wait.
A beautiful story of erotic love and spiritual yearning, Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi is playful, stylish, sensual, comic, ingenious and utterly captivating. It confirms Geoff Dyer as one of the most exciting authors writing in English today.
'There are few writers at work today whose humour and intelligence radiate so clearly from their texts.' Australian
From one of Britain’s most original writers, White Sands is a creative exploration of why we travel. Episodic, wide-ranging, funny and smart, the linked journeys recall the themes of Dyer’s Yoga for People Who Can’t Be Bothered to Do It––albeit with the wisdom of (middle) age.
From a trip to the Lightning Field in New Mexico to chasing Gauguin’s ghost in French Polynesia, from falling for someone who may or may not be a tour guide in Beijing’s Forbidden City to tracking down the house of an intellectual hero in Los Angeles, Dyer pursues all permutations of the peak experience––including the trough experience.
In his trademark style he blends travel writing, essay, criticism and fiction with a smart and cantankerous wit that is unmatched. This is a book for armchair travellers and procrastinating philosophers everywhere.
Geoff Dyer is the author of Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi and three previous novels, as well as nine non-fiction books. He has won the Somerset Maugham Prize, the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction, a Lannan Literary Award, the International Centre of Photography's 2006 Infinity Award for writing on photography, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters E.M. Forster Award. In 2009 he was named GQ’s Writer of the Year. He won a National Book Critics Circle Award in 2011 and was a finalist in 1998. In 2015 he won a Windham Campbell Award for Non-fiction and was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His books have been translated into more than twenty languages. Dyer currently lives in Los Angeles where he is a writer-in-residence at the University of Southern California. His most recent book is White Sands: Experiences from the Outside World.
‘A wild blend of travelogue, fiction and essay, [White Sands] affirms the English writer’s unrivalled capacity to playfully contest the segregation of genres…Dyer’s increasing sense of amiable purposelessness…leaves room for him to dwell, with some genius, on the accidental pleasures of disappointment.’ Monthly
[Dyer’s] free-association meanderings are part essay, part travel writing, part fiction—told with wit and humour.’ Qantas Magazine
‘One of the funniest writers working today.’ Australian Book Review
‘Geoff Dyer is a true original–one of those rare voices in contemporary literature that never ceases to surprise, disturb and delight.’ William Boyd
‘Reading Dyer is akin to the sudden elation and optimism you feel when you make a new friend, someone as silly as you but cleverer too, in whose company you know you will travel though life more vagrantly, intensely, joyfully…Quite possibly the best living writer in Britain.’ Daily Telegraph (UK)
‘Dyer is more than a cult writer; he’s a virus, invading your system. You look at things differently, embracing the idiosyncratic, keeping the obvious at bay.’ Spectator
‘Among the most original and talented writers of his generation.’ Independent on Sunday
‘Dyer is compared to Proust, Lawrence and Kingsley Amis. The praise is deserved.’ Evening Standard
‘Expect customary wit and insight…Likely the literary travel event of the year.
As a child Geoff Dyer spent long hours making and blotchily painting model fighter planes. So the adult Dyer jumped at the chance of a residency aboard an aircraft carrier. Another Great Day at Sea chronicles Dyer's experiences on the USS George H.W. Bush as he navigates the routines and protocols of 'carrier-world', from the elaborate choreography of the flight deck through miles of walkways and hatches to kitchens serving meals for a crew of five thousand to the deafening complexity of catapult and arresting gear. Meeting the Captain, the F-18 pilots and the dentists, experiencing everything from a man-overboard alert to the Steel Beach Party, Dyer guides us through the most AIE (acronym intensive environment) imaginable.
A lanky Englishman (could he really be both the tallest and the oldest person on the ship?) in a deeply American world, with its constant exhortations to improve, to do better, Dyer brilliantly records the daily life on board the ship, revealing it to be a prism for understanding a society where discipline and conformity, dedication and optimism, become forms of self-expression. In the process it becomes clear why Geoff Dyer has been widely praised as one of the most original - and funniest - voices in literature.
Another Great Day at Sea is the definitive work of an author whose books defy definition.
Geoff Dyer is the author of three previous novels, a critical study of John Berger and six other non-fiction books including But Beautiful, which was awarded the Somerset Maugham Prize, and Out of Sheer Rage, which was a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist. Dyer lives in London and contributes to numerous publications including the Observer, Guardian and New Statesman.
'Geoff Dyer observes the privations and discipline of US warship life with a sharp eye...no writer has more fun with his own awkwardness, and in this respect you can't help feeling he has come to exactly the right place...' Observer
'Dyer fans will warm to his comic digressions on moustaches, deliriously sentimental reveries about what it might have been like to be a Battle of Britain pilot, semi-embarrassing stories about jokingly asking the carrier's gym boss where he might score steroids, and meditations on the similarities between writing and piloting a plane.' Financial Times
'Another Great Day at Sea is a perfect beach read, wherever your boots happen to be on the ground this summer.' Evening Standard
'Dyer succeeds in rendering a very vivid impression of what life is like on an aircraft carrier. He is more assiduous than he lets on, providing the reader with all the most astounding statistics from each department...quite unexpectedly from such a very teasing, very English writer, the book quickly transforms into a love-letter to the can-do optimism of America.' 5 stars Daily Mail
'One of the myriad joys of reading Dyer is his frankness about aspects of life that many writers don't share...The book is stuffed with wonderful anecdotes. And, of course, it wouldn't be Dyer if there wasn't the sharp self-awareness... A total delight.' Independent
'Written in Dyer's elegant, playful style...Another Great Day at Sea has... a thin membrane between life and art, a staging area for an investigation of self, an impish poetry of its own. If this is the new reality, I hunger for more.
Far from being footnotes to the main body of work Berger's essays are absolutely central to it. Many of the ideas of the groundbreaking Ways of Seeing were presented first in essays published in New Society. Polemical, reflective, radically original, Berger's wide-ranging essays emphasise the continuities that have underpinned more than 40 years of tireless intellectual inquiry and political engagement. Viewed chronologically they add up, in fact, to a kind of vicarious autobiography and a history of our time as refracted through the prism of art.
Edited by Geoff Dyer, and published on the occasion of his 75th birthday, this is an essential collection by one of the world's greatest writers.
Besides exploring what it is that makes great art great, Working the Room ventures into more personal territory with extensive autobiographical pieces - 'On Being an Only Child', 'Sacked' and 'Reader's Block', among other gems. Dyer's breadth of vision and generosity of spirit combine to form a manual for ways of being in - and seeing - the world today.