"Anita Brookner has staked out a distinctive territory...and made it clear that she is one of the finest novelists of her generation." The New York Times
"If Henry James were around, the only writer he'd be reading with complete approval would be Anita Brookner. A Closed Eye is [a] marvel of ease and clarity, and precision." The New York Times Book Review
"[Brookner's] prose is famously graceful, her understanding of human nature always keen .... A Closed Eye exhibits all of her elegance, subtlety of perception, and wistful tenderness" Newsday
"Stiletto-sharp powers of observation...[Brookner] offers amusement akin to the slightly illicit pleasure of sitting down to lunch with a clever and malicious gossip. Indiscretions will be revealed, unhappiness and tragedy hinted at, and you will be...hungry for more." Chicago Tribune
I suspect that if Henry James were around, the only writer he'd be reading with complete approval would be Anita Brookner; "A Closed Eye" is the marvel of ease and clarity and precision that Ms. Brookner's readers expect. -- New York Times
Brookner portrays another repressed woman whose yearning for love is stifled in by convention. (Jan.)
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Brookner triumphs again with this superb portrait of protagonist Harriet Lytton. Harriet, a birthmarked only child, escapes genteel poverty when she marries Freddie, her father's affluent wartime friend. In typical Brookner fashion, Harriet's sheltered existence and unawakened passions contrast sharply with her friend Tessa's short and reckless life. Harriet dotes on beautiful, spoiled offspring Imogen; while Lizzie, Tessa's plain and neglected daughter, stands silently by. Even Harriet's adulterous fantasies about Jack, Tessa's renegade husband, fail to give her fulfillment or prompt any decisive action to change the emotional status quo. Alone at the end, Harriet sits in the ``empty room'' of her life floating somewhere between life and death. With scalpel-like prose, Brookner cuts through the veneer of a life viewed through a ``closed eye'' and expertly exposes its secret pain, compromises, and betrayals. Recommended. Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 11/1/91.-- Jacqueline Adams, Carroll Cty. P.L., Westminster, Md.