The Sense of an Ending - Julian Barnes
Books that I like fall into two categories: either they are well written and have characters or a story I strongly identify with, or they are so exquisitely written that I can't help but admire the artistry that went into crafting such a work. Books that fall into the first category are the types of books that make the average person think they can write a book, if they just had the time and gumption. Books that fall into the second category show with absolute clarity that writing is an art, and very few people possess and cultivate the gift of writing.

The Sense of an Ending definitely falls into the second category. It's a book which made me marvel at Mr. Barnes' thought process, imagination and especially his mastery of the language!

The story itself doesn't have much to recommend it. It's about a man just past middle age who looks back at the friendships and relationships he had as a young man, and the aftereffects of a falling out he had with one particular friend. There is a twist which actually makes the story interesting, but I'm not going to give it away.