Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Il gioco preferito” as Want to Read:
Il gioco preferito
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Il gioco preferito

3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  1,990 ratings  ·  139 reviews
Romanzo d’esordio di uno dei più grandi artisti contemporanei, Il gioco preferito è considerato in assoluto tra i dieci migliori romanzi canadesi del ‘900. Pubblicato in Italia nel 1975 da Longanesi, Il gioco preferito è assente dalle librerie da oltre venti anni e viene ora riproposto da Fazi Editore in una nuova traduzione. Scritto qualche anno prima del debutto di Cohen ...more
Paperback, Le strade #60, 280 pages
Published November 29th 2002 by Fazi (first published 1963)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Il gioco preferito, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Il gioco preferito

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
It's been over 10 years since I read Cohen's Beautiful Losers and I really don't remember much besides, well, a vibrator. I wasn't sure what to expect from this book? What will the favorite game turn out to be? Does it involve a vibrator?

This is a semi-autobiographical, coming-of-age novel about Montrealian (is that a thing? let's call it a thing) Lawrence Breavman who, from a rather young age, is fairly obsessed with sex. Or, I don't know, maybe all boys are, or maybe it's a Canadian thing.

Leonard Cohen, like the artist at various times known as Prince, likes to fuse God and sex together, so that for him shagging is like Communion is for Catholics, and he shares this view with crazy cult leaders and holy lechers throughout history, as can be seen in songs like Hallelujah (check out what that holy dove is up to), Dance Me to the End of Love (one of my top favourites) and his other - wilder - weirder - better - far more disgusting - novel Beautiful Losers.

In this first novel he give
As can be confirmed from the recently released biography of Leonard Cohen I’m Your Man, The Favourite Game is a semi- autobiographical work. Humour is something most people don’t associate with Leonard Cohen but this book has it (mostly in the first part). What I first found striking about the book was the short chapters, more like vignettes almost like poems connecting the dots of the story. Not having grown up in 1950’s Canada I can only guess that Cohen’s depiction of it during Breavman’s chi ...more
"Shell was genuinely fond of him. She had to resort to that expression when she examined her feelings. That sickened her because she did not wish to dedicate her life to a fondness. This was not the kind of quiet she wanted. The elegance of a dancing couple was remarkable only because the grace evolved from a sweet struggle of flesh. Otherwise it was puppetry, hideous. She began to understand peace as an aftermath."

Out of print, bitches. Find your own copy.
David Hartzheim
It doesn't take very many pages into Leonard Cohen's The Favorite Game to be reminded just how much the man loves language and how well he paints with it. Better known as a song writer and a poet, Cohen has published only two novels: The Favorite Game (1963) and Beautiful Losers (1966). No doubt he has his reasons for not channeling more of his output into prose, but it's a shame as his fiction is every bit as good as his music and poetry.

The Favorite Game is a love story, a love story about bei
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
It's the crapshoot of prose written by a poet: parts break your heart, other parts fail to keep your attention.
Cohen's prose is generous yet contained, and so exquisitely evocative and sensual that reading The Favourite Game in a short period of time, as I did, in just over five hours, begins to feel much like the hours-long embrace of passionate young lovers, punctuated by fevered outbursts of raw sexuality. Putting the book down, at its end, feels like one last tight hug and tender kiss at a door, before the young lovers lose one another for an unthinkable, no matter how short, time.

The easy way to ta
This could get a little gushy...Being a huge fan of Leonard Cohen, imagine my joy when Jade found this book at the library. Imagine also my nervousness at starting it - would it meet my (very high) expectations or would I struggle to find something to admire? It felt a little like a first date.

It seems fitting then that, once embarked upon, the experience of reading this felt like a wonderful seduction, each word chosen with such care, that had me falling in love with Leonard all over again. A c
Mark Drew
Lawrence Breavman, you are, in actuality, a misogynist, a user and a taker and your ultimate fate is briefly noted within the same grey colored future as you left your mother and deserted your friend and lovers.

I have no real summary review of this book - what it does is remind me again of the wisdom of Shakyamuni in the Upajjhatthana Sutta:

"'I am subject to aging, have not gone beyond aging.'

"'I am subject to illness, have not gone beyond illness.' ...

"'I am subject to death, have not gone beyo
Lawrence Breavman is a child, then a youth, then something a little older. Lawrence Breavman is a student, a lover, a seeker. But mostly Lawrence Breavman is just really fucking intense.
The novel unfolds in discrete imagistic scenes. The writing's very, forlackofabetterword, poetic: it reaches constantly and often ostentatiously toward beauty, transcendence, etc. There's a bit of a tendency to aphorism, with results that are pretty if not always earned. Beauty, achieving beauty, holding on to be
I was talking with my philosophy teacher about stream-of-consciousness fiction. We both agreed it was a frustrating format, because, as he put it, "it was too self-indulgent."

Enter Leonard Cohen, brilliant poet and musician. His books are blatantly too much of a good thing -- because if you want 330 pages of his poetic comparisons, you must have some kind of infinite tolerance. It took forever to finish because it was just so odd to go through; it was vaguely chronological, but felt almost above
Not to be confused with the (quite frankly awesome) song of the same name by The Cardigans, The Favourite Game is singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen's first novel, and boy, does it set a high standard. In fact, I'm inclined to think of it as Cohen's best, and it's certainly my personal favourite.

It's also a difficult book to classify - Cohen's fluid prose often resembles poetry in its style and form, and there are elements of the manuscript that are autobiographical. It has a story behind it, too -
A few years ago, I read Beautiful Losers and was impressed by its beauty. It took me a while to come to Leonard's other novel, because sometimes when a poet you love has written only two novels, you want to take your time to be finished with his literature. Now that I had a bit of spare time I came to the Favourite Game, and it fed me, I was dry inside and didn't know it, and it gave me poetic energy and the desire to write again, and I did. I think that the most beautiful books deliver inspirat ...more
Apr 05, 2009 Eggsovergreasy marked it as didn-t-finish  ·  review of another edition
I tired to read this book for a second time and again I couldn't make it past the first 10 pages.

Leonard Cohen is one of my top 5 favorite music list, but I don't like his prose at all.

All of the literature in the James Joyce style of "steam of consciousness" or whatever you call it... when the text tries to confuse you... no, it doesn't cut it with me. Though I can't say Cohen's text in this book was incoherent... you just get the feeling immediately that it's more about the writer than about

ho fatto fatica a leggerlo. e non ho capito perché fin quasi alla fine: mi piaceva, era intenso e pensieroso, problematico come piace a me. troppo, ecco. i pensieri di un capitolo concentrati in una frase per volta, compressi. per leggerlo veramente ci vuole la concentrazione di dieci pagine in ogni riga, e io così faccio fatica.
come dopo aver letto troppo coupland, mi sono convinto che c'è qualcosa di malinconico, nel canada. un paese troppo grande per avere un'unica anima, con le città troppo

Read this over the holiday weekend, which was good as I think it would have been a bit of a struggle without some dedicated time to allow me to keep the story alive. Not an easy read, about not very likeable characters. I was intrigued by the dust cover which described it as one of the 10 best Canadian novels of the 21st century...what are the other 9...
Brian Baker
Ok, I only got halfway through this so maybe it's a bit unfair to give it a one-star rating, but I couldn't sustain my interest in this book. It's a good job he took up music in my opinion - a three minute drone is pleasant enough, but over a hundred pages of it palls horribly. Sincerely B. Baker
Ilyhana Kennedy
This book is the reason why I give less than five stars to so many others.
Exquisitely written, it allows the reader an insight into the life experiences of a brutally self-involved person.
The central character Breavman lives in a world of his own creation, a world of "expectation". He lurches from one whim to the next and in the process leaves a trail of relationship debris, about which he cares little.
In the sheer genius of his style, Cohen redeems his protagonist from his life of arrogance an
Mar 20, 2008 Elizabeth marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
This is on my bedside table because it was recommended by Alan, a bookseller at Waterstones in Islington, who seemed from his other picks to have good taste. And I've always had a soft spot for Leonard Cohen. Soft like a spreading bruise...
Maria Hardie
Little happens. One of many books with rich shallow character who can't make relationships. Just for a on about bodies. Rubbish. Like Leonard's music & voice though.
Melissa D'andrea
I respect Leonard Cohen but I was so bored with this book and felt it lacked a plot. Didn't help that the protagonist was extremely unlikable.
Susan Armstrong
longest read ever of a short book. The Globe and Mail compared it to Catcher in the Rye. I think not.
Daniel Benevides
Tem uma ótima edição em português, da Cosac Naify, mas nao apareceu a capinha aqui
Very confusing, jumped around from character to character. Boring.
Non conosco abbastanza Cohen per fare un paragone con le sue canzoni, ma questo libro è poesia allo stato puro. Una serie di fotografie che ci portano dall'infanzia all'età adulta di Breavman, illustrandoci le sue scoperte e i suoi pensieri.
Il rapporto con i genitori, l'amicizia e soprattutto l'amore sono i temi ricorrenti di questa vita in fondo simile a tante altre, ma resa lirica da un linguaggio mai banale. Il dono dei grandi poeti è quello di rendere commoventi e speciali anche le cose più
Jordaan Mason
'your body will never familiar.'
Hannah Lockhart
This actually took me quite a while to read. I read it in slivers, in small sections, maybe a few pages a day for a month. Perhaps I was savouring it or perhaps it was just difficult to read. In all likelihood, it was a mixture of the two. A friend leant it to me, knowing how much I love Leonard Cohen (I leant her his poetry book 'The Book of Longing' in exchange).

I'm not too sure that his fiction (or semi-autobiographical fiction, I beg your pardon) is that different from his poetry, really. I
Erwin Maack

Livro 3, 10
" Algumas mulheres tomam a própria beleza como um carro esporte especialmente adaptado ou um cavalo puro-sangue. Levam-na a cada compromisso e dão entrevistas sentadas na sela. As mais afortunadas sofrem pequenos acidentes e aprendem a andar na rua porque ninguém quer dar ouvidos a uma senhora arrogante. Algumas mulheres vestem musgo sobre a beleza e de vez em quando alguma coisa remove esse musgo – um amante, uma gravidez, ou mesmo a morte -, e um sorriso incrível se revela, olhos p
I've always thought of Leonard Cohen as a songwriter and poet first (Every time I hear his name I get his song "Hallelujah" stuck in my head) so I was surprised to see that he'd written a novel. The Favorite Game was actually written and published clear back in the early 1960s, so it's not like Cohen just recently turned away from poetry to start writing straight prose. And, to be honest, in a lot of ways this book reads like poetry. Cohen's descriptions of scenery, a lover's body, even scenes o ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Various Positions: A Life of Leonard Cohen
  • Joshua Then and Now
  • Such Is My Beloved
  • The Watch that Ends the Night
  • A Jest of God
  • Con ánimo de ofender: (Artículos 1998-2001)
  • Rhyming Life and Death
  • Bear
  • Not Wanted On The Voyage
  • Man Descending: Selected Stories
  • Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town
  • Lavoura Arcaica
  • The Onion Eaters
  • The Commissariat of Enlightenment
  • Siege 13
  • Kamouraska (Le Livre De Poche)
  • The Neandertal Enigma: Solving the Mystery of Human Origins
Leonard Norman Cohen is a Canadian singer-songwriter, poet and novelist. Cohen published his first book of poetry in Montreal in 1956 and his first novel in 1963.
Cohen's earliest songs (many of which appeared on the 1968 album Songs of Leonard Cohen) were rooted in European folk music melodies and instrumentation, sung in a high baritone. The 1970s were a musically restless period in which his inf
More about Leonard Cohen...
Beautiful Losers Book of Longing Stranger Music: Selected Poems and Songs Selected Poems, 1956-1968 Book of Mercy

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »

“Children show scars like medals. Lovers use them as a secrets to reveal. A scar is what happens when the word is made flesh.” 339 likes
“As our eyes grow accustomed to sight they armour themselves against wonder. ” 124 likes
More quotes…