From Publishers Weekly
Renowned singer-songwriter Cohen also boasts a reputation as a writer for the printed page, especially in his native Canada. This capacious collection (his first since 1993's Stranger Music
) compiles musings, jottings, quatrains, brief lyrics, prose meditations and offhand epigrams, along with Cohen's ink drawings and work in his own handwriting. The melancholy Cohen displays both a surface humility and an underlying self-confidence as he reflects on women (as when recalling his seduction of "the most beautiful girl/ on the religious left"), Zen doctrine, his own advancing age (Cohen turned 70 two years ago) and the legacy of the '60s. Many poems feel like his song lyrics: "Sometimes just a list/ Of my events/ Is holier than the Bill of Rights/ And more intense." The volume will get a boost from Leonard Cohen: I'm Your Man
, a documentary scheduled for theatrical release. (May)
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“[Book of Longing
] is not so much an illustrated collection of poems as it is a shaped autobiography.”
— Globe and Mail
“It reaffirms Cohen’s mastery in the domain of desire, and devotees will not be disappointed.”
— Austin Chronicle
“Tenderness may have replaced passion, but Cohen’s ability to capture this shift makes it poignant and meaningful. . . . Cohen has taken what his friend Irving Layton called ‘the inescapable lousiness of growing old’ and has given it, in its waning days, a profound romantic dignity.”
— Montreal Gazette
“He’s shown an uncanny knack for expressing the changing Zeitgeist.”
— Toronto StarFrom the Trade Paperback edition.