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Clea (Alexandria Quartet #4)

4.22 of 5 stars 4.22  ·  rating details  ·  1,438 ratings  ·  92 reviews
Los tres primeros volúmenes de la tetralogía durrelliana, Justine, Balthazar y Mountolive, son tres dimensiones de la misma ilusoria realidad. Clea, en cambio, es la secuela que proporciona una dimensión temporal. Mnemjian, el barbero, llega a la isla, portador de un mensaje de Nessim. Darley regresa a Alejandría. La ciudad está en plena guerra. Pero Clea lo aguarda. Así s ...more
Paperback, 1st edition, 337 pages
Published March 1986 by Edhasa (first published 1960)
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The final part of the Quartet and it’s been a wonderful journey. Not quite as strong, I thought, as the other three. It is set about seven years later. Darley has been living on a Greek island looking after Melissa’s daughter (with Nessim). Balthasar arrives with information and writing from the late Pursewarden. Many of the aps from the previous novels are filled in.
Darley returns to Alexandria, reuniting Nessim with his daughter. He bumps into Clea and begins a romantic relationship with her.
Ian Klappenskoff
This Precious Image

"Mountolive", the third volume in "The Alexandria Quartet", initially alienated me, but totally turned me around.

"Clea" started in the same manner, but more patient this time, I let it work its magic. It fell into place much more quickly, and the rewards came sooner as well.

Initially, I wondered whether it might be a grab bag of ideas and impressions stitched together as an afterthought to what might otherwise have constituted a trilogy.

Even if it had been conceived of as a
رباعية الاسكندريه , ياالله على الجمال .
عندما يتحدث أى أجنبى عن مدينة أو مكان ما , فأنت امام احتمالين :
-ان يشوه فى هذا المكان (او يُجمل فيه) أى يغلب رأيه الشخصى
-أو أن يقدم شخصيات وأحداث بوجهة نظر حياديه عن مكان يعشقه.
فى هذا العمل : أجنبى يتحدث عن مدينه من أعرق مدن العالم (وهى الإسكندريه) من خلال شخصيات انتقاها بعنايه ليقدم من خلالها وجهة نظره.
(من قرأ شيكاغو سيفهم وجهة نظرى) لكن الفرق بين ما قام به العظيم علاء الأسوانى وما قام به لورنس: هو ان الأسوانى كان يُركز فى المقام الأول على تأثير الغربه عل
In this final volume of the Alexandria Quartet, Durrell returns to Darley’s active narrative. Darley has now departed his Aegean island and returned to Alexandria, resuming his story there during World War II when the city is held by the Free French and is periodically being bombed by the Italians. Some of his old friends have died, but their stories are very much alive and inform the plot. Others have aged but take up their friendships with him. He and Clea, the enigmatic painter, become lovers ...more
After an absence of 7 years or so we return to Alexandria during the last year of WWII with the reliable Darley as narrator. It seems that Durrell actually intends to give us some resolution to this multi-faceted story, so we revisit the same cast of characters, some now dead, some forever altered's difficult to even conjure up the first impressions I had of this exotic bunch.

Of course, the emotional thrust of the story revolves around Clea, someone that we've only met obliquely in the earl
Last of the Alexandria Quartet. I've quoted from the other three, so here's a bit of Clea: "A phrase of Pursewarden's came into my mind as I softly closed the door of the ward. 'The richest love is that which submits to the arbitration of time.' "

Individually, any of the four is a gem. Altogether, the Quartet is magnificent. I don't love, or even like, Elizabeth Gilbert, but I read a quote of hers a bit ago about listening in a college freshman English class to some dude saying how Harper Lee wa
Dec 15, 2012 Judy rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lovers of great literature

Sadly, I have come to the end of The Alexandria Quartet*. It has been a revelatory reading experience and I now see why this dated collection is still read, praised, even loved.

I found Clea the weakest of the four, perhaps because Durrell is winding down, as is the historic city of Alexandria. (These days it is considered an unsafe location for tourists.) During the time covered by Clea, the British Empire's heyday is coming to a close. In his inimitable way, Durrell infuses all of this into a s
Like all young men I set out to be a genius, but mercifully laughter intervened.

Wow, I didn't expect such a sudden dislike. Allow me to retreat to my hutch to scratch together a review.
يا عمّى يا ابو الفانوس..نوّر لى ها العتمة

إن كان هناك تفسيران، على نفس القدر من الجودة، أو أكثر لفعل إنسانى واحد، إذن ماذا يعنى هذا الفعل غير أن يكون وهماً. إيماءة تصدر فى مواجهة الخلفية الضبابية للحقيقة، غدت ملموسة فقط نتيجة الطبيعة الخداعة للانقسام البشرى.

حظى السىء – أقول- وجّهنى متأخرا للتعرف على لورانس داريل. أحيانا ما نعثر فى طريقنا على كتاب أو عمل أدبى ونظن أننا وقعنا على لقية أو كنز متأثرين أشد التأثر أنه ساعدنا على اختصار الزمن وتكثيفه للوصول إلى طبقات للوعى واللاوعى عميقة مدفونة فى حفريا
John David
“Clea,” the fourth volume of Lawrence Durrell’s “Alexandria Quartet,” opens with several years having passed since the events of the first three volumes. Darley, the narrator, is living on a Greek island with the six-year-old illegitimate daughter Nessim fathered with Melissa. After running into Balthazar and his Inter-Linear, he eventually heads off for Alexandria again with the child, full of both trepidation and anticipation about the past and the people he knew there.

When Darley arrives in A
Without question the weakest volume of the Quartet. I thought it had a really pointless, tacked-on, Godfather III quality. Durrell admitted in a Paris Review interview that he had a tendency to procrastinate and then work really quickly when he found himself in severe financial straits. "Ideally, had I not been short of money, I would have written the four, and matched them properly, because there are still quite a lot of discrepancies which will have to be tidied up if the thing is gathered. Bu ...more
To finally have finished the fourth in this amazing quartet of books feels like a journey of sorts.

I have really adored being emersed in the lives of this group of individuals, thrown together through public and political life in a backdrop of exotic Egyptian locations and traditions starting in the romantic 1930's through to wartime. The contrast between the British characters: Mountolive, Darley, Pursewarden and others, (many eccentric tales there), to the Egyptian wealthy socialites ,wealthy
Jan 17, 2013 Alan rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Hard-nosed nostalgia buffs, bleeding hearts and artists and other such scum
Recommended to Alan by: Clayton W.; previous and subsequent work; the Paradox Book Store in Wheeling, WV
Clea is the fourth and final installment of Lawrence Durrell's Alexandria Quartet. If you have not already done so, you should read the others—in sequence—before starting this one. I toyed with the notion of reading these out of order myself, but in the end I'm glad I stuck with the way Durrell presented them. And if you thought perhaps Durrell would run out of material after writing three other books on the same subjects... quite the contrary; there are many revelations here, events not visible ...more
Lori (Hellian)
At first this final book in the series didn't hold up as much as the other 3 because requited love can be boring compared to the angst of requited. But oh! how lovely to settle into that flush of union of spirits and Durrell's poetry captures that transcendence. Plus it's vital to the complete series and the horror the soul experiences as it tries to assimilate the hate and ugliness of war. I only keep books that I love. And are worth rereading and while I doubt I will do that in its entirety - ...more
Mountolive'den sonra, kitaba hala yeni karakterlerin girmesi ile aslında süregelen hikayenin ihtiyaç duyulan açıklamalarının bu kitabın ortalarına kadar açıklanmamış olması biraz can sıkıcı. Mountolive o kadar heyecanlı ve çözüm odaklıydı ki bu kitap biraz gölgede kaldı. Ayrıca herkesin birbirine sürekli yan gözle bakmakta oluşu da artık 4. kitapta biraz batmaya ve şaşırtmamaya başladı. Sonlarına doğru Clea ile ilgili olarak gelişen yan hikaye bile heyecanı arttıramadı. Seri, Mountolive'de bitir ...more
Punto final al Cuarteto de Alejandría. La ciudad, sometida a los rigores de la guerra, es el escenario donde Darley y Clea nos llevarán hasta el ¿desenlace? de todas las historias previamente trazadas en los otros tres libros. Pero como gran reflejo de la vida, los cierres de las historias abren otras historias nuevas... Lo que pasa es que ya no las veremos.
There are four volumes in Lawrence Durrell's sumptuous, stupendous narrative experiment ("Alexandria Quartet') and taken as a whole, they will astound any sensitive reader. It is a one-of-a-kind literary experience which amply deserves all the sensation and renown which surrounded its original release.

Durrell: erudite, wordy, perspicacious, sensitive. Writes with supreme adroitness towards both female and male characters. This particular experiment of his is the very last word in the psychology

Clea – the fourth (and final) installment in Lawrence Durrell’s Alexandria Quartet – returns us to the narrative style of Balthazar, and picks up where it left off.

At the conclusion of Balthazar, Darley receives a letter from Clea, though since I read that novel almost a year ago I don’t have any recollection what that letter was about. But anyway, it was enough to prompt Darley, who had been living on an island with Nessim & Melissa’s daughter, to ret
Christopher Sutch
It's difficult to articulate the incredible achievement Durrell has produced with the Alexandria Quartet, and this, the final novel and, in many ways, key to the series. As Durrell noted in the introduction to the second volume, _Balthazar_, his overall plan was based on the four-dimensional space of Einsteinian relativity physics, and this last volume, indeed, introduces, explicitly, the effects of time into Durrell's narrative, including all the ramifications time represents for interpersonal ...more
CLEA. (1960). Lawence Durrell. ***.
If you haven’t read the first three books of Durrell’s tetraology, “The Alexandria Quartet,” then this book will be essentially meaningless for you. In it, Durrell has his protagonist and narrator, Darley, migrate from one of the Greek islands to Alexandria. The action takes place just before WW II. With him is Nessim’s illegitimate daughter, who is now six years old. When he and Nessim meet again, they begin to lapse into reminiscences of old times and old fr
Beautiful and problematic.
(just like Clea herself?)
Based on my understanding of Durrell's project, I didn't expect any sort of neat-and-tidy conclusion, and a good thing!
The entangled and entwined characters, the metaphors (Freud!), the 'art'...they all come together and then move apart and then come together again, though not with any clear end in sight--even death does not provide any sort of finality.
The human drama, in tandem with (or in some cases, in spite of) the political drama and the s
The finale of this quartet of books is pretty satisfying and (finally) has some gripping plottwists and romantic intrigue, including a James-Franco-esque handcutting scene that's pretty kick-ass.

Books one, two, and four are in Darley's voice, so after the departure of book three, we're back to the over-the-top style begun in Justine. I liked Darley's observations about Egypt and writing (through Pursewarden) more in this book than in the first two, and I think part of my preference derives from
Deborah Palmer
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Clea is the FINAL chapter in Lawrence Durrell's Alexandria Quartet [my reviews for Justine, Balthazar, and Mountolive have already been posted]. As previously stated, this quartet just gets better and more & more interconnected the further into the series you read! Clea was my ABSOLUTE favorite of the Alexandria Quartet novels!

In the ruse of returning Nessim's illegitimate daughter to him, Darley finds himself running into his comrades in Alexandria, of whom he has been formulating a novel.
carl  theaker

The first two volumes Justine and Balthazar cover the philosophical pondering of love, as the narrator falls for Justine, and Justine loves? All the philosophy turns out to be describing 'real' activities in the third of the series Mountolive, which is where we finally learn the narrator's name, though he is no longer narrating, and more of the action, such as it is takes place.

The Alexandria Quartet is written in an 'artsy' manner, one that I couldn't quite get into, though it does have its mo
Clea is the closing installment of the Alexandria Quartet and a well put together way to close out the novel, bring resolution where it is needed and reopen the stories for those of the characters who manage to survive their dramatic demise.
Everyone, if not everything is revealed… everyone loses something in the process… no one emerges unscathed, but everyone is finally true to his or her own self. There are those who hold the promise of a future life where happiness is possible, maybe even prob
Peter Brooks
The Alexandrian quartet is more of an adventure than a read. The people and city reveal themselves not as simply characters in a story, but as four dimensional beings, viewed from completely different perspectives. I've read the quartet four times and I'm planning, soon, to read it again. I suppose that I'll start with Justine, but I've been wondering if it might be more enjoyable to read them in the reverse of the usual order.

Having said all this, Lawrence Durrell isn't for everybody (some even
so i have spent the last 6 months or so reading the alexandria quartet with my girlfriend and at the moment, i am a good third of the way through volume three in terms of a close read with extensive notes. i don't plan on writing a full review, but do plan on writing an essay on durrell's plagiarism - as i have hunted down a good half dozen, and counting, sources that he filched from. i also wanna try and understand why durrell did this and whether the quartet should be seen in a different light ...more
Dorthe Pedersen
Sidste bog i kvartetten - ærgerligt, at den ikke bliver ved i én uendelighed! Jeg tager mig selv i at ønske mig endnu en bog, endnu en vinkel - f.eks. kunne den hedde "Amril"!

Aldrig før har jeg oplevet en by blive beskrevet så menneskelignende, så sanseligt.

Jeg kommer til at savne Durrell! F.eks. side 210: "Sceneriet var allerede skrevet, skuespillerne valgt, tidspunkter og rytme gennemprøvet til sidste detaille i den usynlige forfatters hjerne, en forfatter, der måske i sidste instans ville v
Carmelo Militano
The third part of this novel is the best . The relationship between Darley & Clea is well-done and interesting. Durrell does a good job of creating Clea, a woman with artistic soul and flair. Alas, they don't seem to make young women like her anymore: Pretty, high-spirited, thoughtful, intelligent and possessing a moody & mysterious sense of her relationship to Darley. The musings on art & life in the centre cause the book to sag. The novel looses some of its focus and intensity. Lov ...more
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Goodreads Librari...: Alternative Book cover/edition 2 9 Jul 07, 2014 04:02PM  
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Born in Jalandhar, British India, in 1912 to Indian-born British colonials, Lawrence Durrell was a critically hailed and beloved novelist, poet, humorist, and travel writer best known for the Alexandria Quartet novels, which were ranked by the Modern Library as among the greatest works of English literature in the twentieth century. A passionate and dedicated writer from an early age, Durrell’s pr ...more
More about Lawrence Durrell...

Other Books in the Series

Alexandria Quartet (4 books)
  • Justine (The Alexandria Quartet, #1)
  • Balthazar (The Alexandria Quartet, #2)
  • Mountolive (The Alexandria Quartet, #3)
The Alexandria Quartet  (The Alexandria Quartet #1-4) Justine (The Alexandria Quartet, #1) Balthazar (The Alexandria Quartet, #2) Mountolive (The Alexandria Quartet, #3) Bitter Lemons of Cyprus

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“Like all young men I set out to be a genius, but mercifully laughter intervened.” 11 likes
“Life is more complicated than we think, yet far simpler than anyone dares to imagine” 9 likes
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