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Now a major TV series starring Martin Clunes, Arsher Ali and Art Malik

Now a major TV series starring Martin Clunes, Arsher Ali and Art Malik
From the winner of the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2011, an extraordinary true-life tale about a long-forgotten mystery...

Arthur and George grow up worlds apart in late nineteenth-century Britain: Arthur in shabby-genteel Edinburgh, George in the vicarage of a small Staffordshire village. Arthur is to become one of the most famous men of his age, while George remains in hard-working obscurity. But as the new century begins, they are brought together by a sequence of events that made sensational headlines at the time as The Great Wyrley Outrages.

This is a novel about low crime and high spirituality, guilt and innocence, identity, nationality and race. Most of all it is a profound and moving meditation on the fateful differences between what we believe, what we know and what we can prove.


As ever, Barnes serves up a master-class in character observation, lavishing attention on the minutiae of personality, the subtle and conflicting impulses that drive men and women. Barnes seems equipped to write with humour and elegance about anything he turns his attention to.

Financial Times

A fine literary detective novel and a rich evocation of a somewhat troubled England on the cusp of modernity.

Mail on Sunday

A beguiling and enormously readable novel.


Clearly a wonderful book...Barnes's best yet.

Evening Standard

An engaging work... Arthur and George is as sprightly and acute a biography of Doyle, and as touching a sketch of the persecuted Edjali, as anyone would wish for.

New Statesman

An impressive feat of empathy and organisation.


From the first paragraphs we know ourselves to be in the hands of a major novelist and are borne forward by a compelling narrative, beautifully controlled, which combines the satisfactions of biography, social history and the excitement and ratiocination of a real-life detective story. This novel is Barnes at his best.

The Times

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback


    March 1, 2006


    512 pages

    RRP $22.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook


    July 1, 2010

    Vintage Digital

    512 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

Also by Julian Barnes

The Sense of an Ending
The Noise of Time
The Only Story
A History Of The World In 10 1/2 Chapters (Vintage Past)
Keeping an Eye Open
Levels of Life
Through the Window
A Short History of Hairdressing (Storycuts)
Bark / The Silence (Storycuts)
Appetite (Storycuts)
The Things You Know (Storycuts)
The Story of Mats Israelson (Storycuts)
The Revival (Storycuts)
The Fruit Cage (Storycuts)
Knowing French (Storycuts)
Hygiene (Storycuts)
Vigilance (Storycuts)
Staring At The Sun
Before She Met Me
Talking It Over
A History Of The World In 10 1/2 Chapters


The Handmaid's Tale
To Kill A Mockingbird
Beauty in Thorns
The Award
New Boy
The 7th Function of Language
Best Laid Plans
Echo Burning
A Gentleman in Moscow
Fool Me Once
Private Delhi
The Girl on the Train
The Heart's Invisible Furies
Swing Time
The Narrow Road to the Deep North
The Curious Incident of the Dog In the Night-time
Life After Life
The Girls
The Bone Collection