The Absolutist

John Boyne. Other Press, $16.95 trade paper (309p) ISBN 978-1-59051-552-5
Boyne’s new novel documents the lives of two inseparable men navigating the trenches of WWI and the ramifications of a taboo involvement. The emotive wartime saga is narrated by Tristan Sadler, a soldier en route to visit his dead comrade Will Bancroft’s older sister Marian in Norwich, England, a few years after serving in the Great War. The story oscillates between Sadler’s trip in 1919 to return Will’s letters to Marian, and recollections of wartime, including a forbidden and fleeting homosexual affair with Bancroft, depicted by Boyne with the same polite, properly delicate prose that permeates the book. Bancroft is the self-declared “absolutist” of the title, objecting not only to fighting, but to doing anything at all that would “further the war effort.” Sadler’s feelings for Bancroft bring him shame amid the horrors of battle, eventually making an absolutist of Sadler as well. When the young Sadler confides the details of his time with Bancroft to Marian, she rejects him, a reaction echoed 60 years later, by which time Sadler has come into his own as a literary sensation. Once again he braves Marian’s disapproval, inciting a final heartbreak. A relentlessly tragic yet beautifully crafted novel from Boyne (The Boy in the Striped Pajamas). Agent: Bonnie Nadell, Hill Nadell Literary Agency. (July)
Reviewed on: 04/09/2012
Release date: 07/10/2012
Show other formats
Compact Disc - 978-1-4526-0936-2
MP3 CD - 978-1-4526-5936-7
Compact Disc - 978-1-4526-3936-9
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-299-56895-2
Paperback - 309 pages - 978-0-385-61605-8
Hardcover - 309 pages - 978-0-385-61604-1
Audio Product - 1 pages - 978-1-4526-2936-0
Hardcover - 368 pages - 978-1-4458-5796-1
Hardcover - 8 pages - 978-1-4464-7194-4
Hardcover - 978-0-385-66872-9
Hardcover - 1 pages - 978-1-4464-8103-5
Paperback - 309 pages - 978-0-385-66870-5
Paperback - 448 pages - 978-1-4458-5797-8
Open Ebook - 432 pages - 978-1-4090-4486-4
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-4676-3116-7
Open Ebook - 175 pages - 978-1-59051-553-2
Paperback - 426 pages - 978-0-552-77540-3
Open Ebook - 320 pages - 978-0-385-66871-2
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Email Address


Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.