The Favourite Game by LEONARD COHENThe Favourite Game by LEONARD COHEN

The Favourite Game


Paperback | September 1, 2000

Pricing and Purchase Info

$17.12 online 
$21.00 list price save 18%
Earn 86 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


In stock online

Ships free on orders over $25

Available in stores


In this unforgettable novel, Leonard Cohen boldly etches the youth and early manhood of Lawrence Breavman, only son of an old Jewish family in Montreal. Life for Breavman is made up of dazzling colour – a series of motion pictures fed through a high-speed projector: the half-understood death of his father; the adult games of love and war, with their infinite capacity for fantasy and cruelty; his secret experiments with hypnotism; the night-long adventures with Krantz, his beloved comrade and confidant. Later, achieving literary fame as a college student, Breavman does penance through manual labour, but ultimately flees to New York. And although he has loved the bodies of many women, it is only when he meets Shell, whom he awakens to her own beauty, that he discovers the totality of love and its demands, and comes to terms with the sacrifices he must make.
Leonard Cohen was born in Montreal in 1934. He received his B.A. from McGill University and pursued graduate studies in English at Columbia University. Soon thereafter, he returned to Montreal and worked in his family’s clothing business while he continued to write poetry. His artistic career began in 1956 with the publication of Let U...
Title:The Favourite GameFormat:PaperbackDimensions:256 pages, 8.36 × 5.38 × 0.69 inPublished:September 1, 2000Publisher:McClelland & StewartLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0771022018

ISBN - 13:9780771022012

Look for similar items by category:


Rated 3 out of 5 by from Okay I didn't thoroughly enjoy this book. The story line was okay and the narrative a bit wonky. I prefer Cohen's poetry but I cannot deny he has an interesting style of prose.
Date published: 2017-12-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Overall a nice read Hectic work commitment and schedule had pulled me away from enjoying a work of fiction for quite a long while. The Favourite Game was a great re-introduction to reading, my long time passion. The beautiful first chapter tasted like poetry, rich and delicate. A novel by a poet, I was impressed. Then the book took a different turn. It had become a coming of age story following the common journey of sexual exploration by the main character with indeterminate personality. Just when I was about to be disappointed, bringing to the forefront of my mind the negative reviews I read before, the story has thankfully transformed itself once again. Along with the plot of the central character's best friend leaving him to another place to work, in parallel, Leonard Cohen had all of a sudden allowed all his characters to be more concrete and with life. A much more gripping story until the end. It was overall a nice read. I was glad that I came across this nice work.
Date published: 2017-06-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic piece of CanLit. This book is a must read!! It is Canada's answer to Catcher in the Rye, but MUCH funnier, sexier, and more interesting in general. At the same time, it is a very thought-provoking portrait of the artist as a young man , and what an artist Breaveman/Cohen is!!! This is among the best books written in Canada in the 20th century.
Date published: 2005-06-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Another Canadian Favourite This book was wonderfully written and if you want to enhance your vocabulary this book by Leonard Cohen is the one to read. This fiction/autobiography really gives you an in depth reality of the character Breavman and his struggle with life. So if you are looking for the perfect Canadian book I would suggest "The Favourite Game", it is a truly touching story and is a great book.
Date published: 2000-06-28

From Our Editors

Through his songs and other writings Leonard Cohen has vividly captured passionate feelings unlike any other Canadian artist. The Favourite Game is a partly autobiographical novel that follows a young hero who comes of age and confronts his creative destiny. The emotional turbulence of a young poetic soul, and the spirit of the Jewish Montreal of the ’50s are conveyed with inimitable style. Originally published in 1963, this wonderful edition of Cohen’s first novel is sure to please fans of both his work and of Canadian literature.

Editorial Reviews

“Is there any Canadian novel as compelling and as good at capturing youthful anxieties as J. D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye? Absolutely.…Leonard Cohen’s first novel, The Favourite Game.…One of the 10 best Canadian novels of the 20th century.…”— Globe and Mail (January 2000)“The Favourite Game is a morally brave book, intimate and unflinching.…Leonard Cohen sustains the highest level of poetic craftsmanship throughout.”— Paul Quarrington“He is a writer of terrific energy and colour, a Rabelaisian comic and a visualiser of some memorable scenes.”— The Observer (U.K.)“It is the kind of book that becomes a law unto itself, simply because there is nothing with which to compare it.”— Calgary Albertan