A Christmas gift from dear friend U. aka T.A. Thanks a lot!!!
Page 12 - Preface Many friends have helped me in writing this book. Some are dead and so i...moreA Christmas gift from dear friend U. aka T.A. Thanks a lot!!!
Page 12 - Preface Many friends have helped me in writing this book. Some are dead and so illustrious that I scarcely dare name them, yet no one can read or write without being perpetually in the debt of Defoe, Sir Thomas Browne, Sterne, Sir Walter Scott, Lord Macaulay, Emily Bronte, De Quincey, and Walter Pater — to name the first that come to mind. Others are alive, and though perhaps as illustrious in their own way, are less formidable for that very reason.
Page 156: As the ninth, tenth, and eleventh strokes struck, a huge blackness sprawled over the whole of London. With the twelfth stroke of midnight, the darkness was complete. A turbulent welter of cloud covered the city. All was darkness; all was doubt; all was confusion. The Eighteenth century was over; the Nineteenth century had begun.
Orlando tells the story of a journey through time, from someone who lives for about four years, first as a man and later as a woman.
This book portrays Virginia Woolf thought about sexual duality. It is a splendid story based on some passages in the life of Vita Sackville-West.
This is the story of Martin Rilke, a Chicago journalist and his British cousins, the Greevilles, w...moreTHis is the second book of the Passing Bells series.
This is the story of Martin Rilke, a Chicago journalist and his British cousins, the Greevilles, who live in Abingdon Pryory.
After the end of World War I, some characters must face their beloved lost during the Great War as well as to recover from acute shell shock.
A momentary feeling of peace and happiness occurs but the economical and political German situation doesn't bring the expected optimism: the inflation is quite high, there is lack of food and some political conspirators start to point out the rising of the Nazis.
According to Wikipedia Amok "also spelled amuk, from the Malay meaning "mad with uncontrollable rage") is a term that is used for a sudden outburst, u...moreAccording to Wikipedia Amok "also spelled amuk, from the Malay meaning "mad with uncontrollable rage") is a term that is used for a sudden outburst, usually aggressive or violent, and is preceded by a dissociative episode of brooding over some perceived wrong towards a person or object."
The plot revolves describes the instantaneous and violent passion of a German doctor working in a Dutch colony in Asia, by a beautiful English woman who asks for his help in a very special moment.
The sudden feeling and desperate race behind a solution to the problem of young woman determines a dramatic storyline. This story is told by the doctor to the narrator during a transoceanic trip.
This is a Downton Abbey-esque Books but even if I tried hard to enjoy it, I must confess I didn't managed to like it.
The idea of the story is interes...moreThis is a Downton Abbey-esque Books but even if I tried hard to enjoy it, I must confess I didn't managed to like it.
The idea of the story is interesting, typical from an Edwardian era. But there is a lack of true emotion aan real engagement among the main characters which makes the reader to loose interest into the plot.
I hate when I finish a book and I have to ask the stupid question: and so what??
Probably I won't read any other book by this author. There are better books on this subject.
It was quite interesting to read which inspired the modern espionage books.
According to Mark Valentine, he ranked it in the top five spy stories of t...moreIt was quite interesting to read which inspired the modern espionage books.
According to Mark Valentine, he ranked it in the top five spy stories of the 20th century, along with Buchan's The 39 Steps, Conrad's The Secret Agent Somerset Maugham's Ashenden and the now unjustly overlooked Bretherton, a Great War tale by Major W.F. Morris.
This was the only fiction book written by Childers who was unfaithful charged by treason since he was found in possession of a firearm - a capital offense by the Irish government at that time, even if it was only a souvenir, a miniature pistol given him by Michael Collins!
By irony of the destiny, his eldest son became the fourth President of Ireland.
A memorable book with plenty of intrigue dealing with the threat of invasion of Britain by the Germans. (less)
Chapter XXIII: You know, there are two good things in life, freedom of thought and freedom of action. In F...moreFree download available at Project Gutenberg.
Chapter XXIII: You know, there are two good things in life, freedom of thought and freedom of action. In France you get freedom of action: you can do what you like and nobody bothers, but you must think like everybody else. In Germany you must do what everybody else does, but you may think as you choose. They're both very good things. I personally prefer freedom of thought. But in England you get neither: you're ground down by convention. You can't think as you like and you can't act as you like. That's because it's a democratic nation. I expect America's worse."
Chapter XXVII: He remembered his uncle's saying that it took three generations to make a gentleman: it was a companion proverb to the silk purse and the sow's ear. "First of all he's the son of a gentleman, and he's been to a public school, and to Oxford or Cambridge."
Chapter XXXIII: Mrs. Carey thought there were only four professions for a gentleman, the Army, the Navy, the Law, and the Church. She had added medicine because her brother-in-law practised it, but did not forget that in her young days no one ever considered the doctor a gentleman.
Chapter L: "The artist gets a peculiar sensation from something he sees, and is impelled to express it and, he doesn't know why, he can only express his feeling by lines and colours. It's like a musician; he'll read a line or two, and a certain combination of notes presents itself to him: he doesn't know why such and such words call forth in him such and such notes; they just do. And I'll tell you another reason why criticism is meaningless: a great painter forces the world to see nature as he sees it; but in the next generation another painter sees the world in another way, and then the public judges him not by himself but by his predecessor. So the Barbizon people taught our fathers to look at trees in a certain manner, and when Monet came along and painted differently, people said: But trees aren't like that. It never struck them that trees are exactly how a painter chooses to see them. We paint from within outwards—if we force our vision on the world it calls us great painters; if we don't it ignores us; but we are the same. We don't attach any meaning to greatness or to smallness. What happens to our work afterwards is unimportant; we have got all we could out of it while we were doing it."
Chapter LXVII: "Well, I can't say anything about other people. I can only speak for myself. The illusion of free will is so strong in my mind that I can't get away from it, but I believe it is only an illusion. But it is an illusion which is one of the strongest motives of my actions. Before I do anything I feel that I have choice, and that influences what I do; but afterwards, when the thing is done, I believe that it was inevitable from all eternity."
Another magnificent book written by Somerset Maugham which portrays once again his personal life. It is amazing why the author never worked as a physician.
There are three film versions of this book:
Of Human Bondage (1934) – Leslie Howard as Philip, and Bette Davis as Mildred, the role that established her as a star Of Human Bondage (1946) – Directed by Edmund Goulding, with Paul Henreid and Eleanor Parker in the lead roles Of Human Bondage (1964) – Laurence Harvey and Kim Novak in the lead roles
5* The Razor's Edge 5* Of Human Bondage 4* The Painted Veil 4* The Narrow Corner 3* Liza of Lambeth 3* Ashenden TR Cakes and Ale TR The Moon And Sixpence TR The Circle - A Comedy in Three Acts TR The Magician (less)
There is a new movie version of this book but I always want to read the book first.
A gift from my brother.
This novel is based on a true story when in...moreThere is a new movie version of this book but I always want to read the book first.
A gift from my brother.
This novel is based on a true story when in May 2006, the author attended the trial of the poisoner Mrs. Canaby: L’affaire des Chartrons.
Therese, as well as Madame Bovary in some way, lives in her own world since her husband is not able to understand her feelings. Even with the birth of their daughter, their faith won't change any more.
The author uses the flashback technique in order to tell the story. But, since it's a novella, sometimes the scale of time is too short.
Opening lines: Mr. Caryll, lately from Rome, stood by the window, looking out over the rainswept, steaming quays to Notre Dame on the island yonder. Ov...moreOpening lines: Mr. Caryll, lately from Rome, stood by the window, looking out over the rainswept, steaming quays to Notre Dame on the island yonder. Overhead rolled and crackled the artillery of an April thunderstorm, and Mr. Caryll, looking out upon Paris in her shroud of rain, under her pall of thundercloud, felt himself at harmony with Nature. Over his heart, too, the gloom of storm was lowering, just as in his heart it was still little more than April time.
4* Scaramouche 4* The Sea-Hawk 3* The Sword of Islam 3* The Red Mask 2* The Curate and the Actress 4* Love-at-Arms 4* Casanova's Alibi and Other Stories 3* The Lion's Skin TBR Captain Blood TBR Captain Blood Returns TBR The Fortunes of Captain Blood(less)
Opening lines: Iwas born in San Francisco, California. I have in consequence always preferred living in a te...moreFree download available at eBooks@Adelaide.
Opening lines: Iwas born in San Francisco, California. I have in consequence always preferred living in a temperate climate but it is difficult, on the continent of Europe or even in America, to find a temperate climate and live in it. My mother’s father was a pioneer, he came to California in ‘49, he married my grandmother who was very fond of music. She was a pupil of Clara Schumann’s father. My mother was a quiet charming woman named Emilie.
A splendid book where we can find some historical artists such as Picasso, Matisse, Braque as well as some famous writers, Ernest Hemingway among others.
The book is written in a prose mode which makes the reading flows quite well. The description of how the intellectuals faced the World War I is also described by the author.
Portrait of Gertrude Stein by Pablo Picasso inside Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City.
From BBC Radio 4 Extra: Dramatisation of the classic novel by Victor Hugo set in France around the time of the Revolution, featuring Joss Ackland.
Since...moreFrom BBC Radio 4 Extra: Dramatisation of the classic novel by Victor Hugo set in France around the time of the Revolution, featuring Joss Ackland.
Since I don't remember how many times I've already read this book, I decided to listen to this magnificent BBC dramatization. However I won't dare to watch to the recent Hollywood's movie since Gerard Depardieu is the perfect character for the personification of Jean Valjean.(less)
The plot describes the obsessive love of a clerk, Frederick Clegg, by Miranda Grey, an art student. Sin...moreThis is the first novel written by John Fowles.
The plot describes the obsessive love of a clerk, Frederick Clegg, by Miranda Grey, an art student. Since this is a psychological thriller, the story has a lot of elements of horror from the captor against his prey. During her captivity, Miranda manages to write her diary with her own version of this brutality against her life and freedom.
An unforgettable movie was made based on this book: The Collector (1965) with a splendid cast such as Terence Stamp and Samantha Eggar.
5* The French Lieutenant's Woman 5* The Magus 4* The Collector TR A Maggot (less)
Opening lines “I LOVE this window,” said Antonia, walking down the drawing-room; “and this one. They both...moreFree download available at Project Gutenberg.
Opening lines “I LOVE this window,” said Antonia, walking down the drawing-room; “and this one. They both look over the moors, you see. This view is even lovelier.” She stopped at the end of the long room, and the young man with the pale face and the limping step followed and looked out of the third window with her. “But—I don’t know why—I hate it. I wish it weren’t here.”
This is the story of Antonia and her lost lover Malcom, death during the war. Her remembrances are shared with Captain Saltonhall.
It seems this book is a sequel of some other book but I couldn't find which one since there are few book descriptions available elsewhere.(less)
This is the story of an orphaned girl who lost her mother in a crash airplane accident. She is raised by his father and after his death, by her solici...moreThis is the story of an orphaned girl who lost her mother in a crash airplane accident. She is raised by his father and after his death, by her solicitor, Constantine.
During her whole life, she tries to get her own free life even if she is not to grown up in doing that. Her inheritance will help to disengage from the Dancey's influence.
This is a psychological romance in the sense that it shows how Eva managed to arrive in her adulthood even if she has to pay a high price for it.(less)
**spoiler alert** From BBC Radio 4 - Saturday Drama: A mysterious horseman, all dressed in black and wearing a six shooter, rides into an isolated vall...more**spoiler alert** From BBC Radio 4 - Saturday Drama: A mysterious horseman, all dressed in black and wearing a six shooter, rides into an isolated valley in Wyoming. Call me Shane, he says. He's a skilled gunslinger, and soon finds himself drawn into a conflict between homesteaders Marian and Joe Starrett and ruthless cattle baron Fletcher, who wants to force the Starretts off the land. Marian is caught between the strong, dependable husband whom she loves, and the lean, handsome stranger whom she needs if she's to save her family.
Recorded by Mark Holden Post production by Nigel Lewis
With music by Fernando Macias-Jimenez
Produced and Directed by Kate McAll
The Oscar winning film 'Shane' starred Paramount idol Alan Ladd in the title role, with Jean Arthur as Marian and Van Heflin as Joe.
Although the story of 'Shane' is fictional, elements of it are based on the 1892 Johnson County War between the small settlers in Wyoming and the bigger, wealthier ranchers.
**spoiler alert** FRom BBC Radio 4 - Saturday Drama: The celebrated theatre director Bill Bryden adapts F Scott Fitzgerald's last and unfinished novel....more**spoiler alert** FRom BBC Radio 4 - Saturday Drama: The celebrated theatre director Bill Bryden adapts F Scott Fitzgerald's last and unfinished novel. Starring Aiden Gillen, Jack Shepherd and Charlotte Emmerson.
Haunted by the death of his wife, 1930s Studio Head Monroe Stahr works eighteen hour days, each one a collision of talent meetings, set visits, script brainstorms and preview screenings. He's the "last of the princes", is making the studio millions and seems bullet proof.
At the end of an epic day, an earthquake breaks two water mains, sending a roaring river of water through the studio. And with it, the huge floating head of the goddess Shiva - a film prop.
As Stahr leaves his office to inspect the damage he sees the head floating by and on it two women, one of them the mesmerising Kathleen.
It's the beginning of a love affair that will destroy him.
As their affair plays out, we follow the disintegration of one of the great Hollywood legends, and also witness the darker heart of the Hollywood machine as a paranoid fear of communism comes to the fore.
It's a gorgeous, excruciating, heady tale - based on Fitzgerald's own painful experiences working in Hollywood as a screenwriter.
Even if the first part of this book is quite boring, making the reader to lose the interest of...moreThis is the final book of the trilogy The Passing Bells.
Even if the first part of this book is quite boring, making the reader to lose the interest of the plot, in the following parts the author managed to regain the proper narrative.
Location 2905: I trust my heart. I know there must be millions of people in Germany who are as dismayed by Hitler's excesses as we are. The nation of Goethe, after all, as well as Nietzsche. Those people must be encouraged to add their voices to the cry for peace.
Location 3232: Our General Dyer massacred Hindus at Amritsar in nineteen and now we let the Mahatma march past out armed cars and place flowers on the machine guns.
Location 4379: There is apathy in France. A shrug of the shoulder. A gesture with the hands. Hitler will take what he wants. There is no point in treaties. The Maginot line stands sullen and powerful from the Ardennes to the Swiss border. There is no danger to the west. Hitler would never bloody his legions against French cannon.
4* The Passing Bells 4* Circles of Time 3* A Future Arrived (less)
The remarkable story "THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON" is even better then the movie which was made based on this story.
This story was inspired by...moreThe remarkable story "THE CURIOUS CASE OF BENJAMIN BUTTON" is even better then the movie which was made based on this story.
This story was inspired by a remark of Mark Twain's to the effect that it was a pity that the best part of life came at the beginning and the worst part at the end. By trying the experiment upon only one man in a perfectly normal world I have scarcely given his idea a fair trial. Several weeks after completing it, I discovered an almost identical plot in Samuel Butler's "Note-books."
The story was published in "Collier's" last summer and provoked this startling letter from an anonymous admirer in Cincinnati:
I have read the story Benjamin Button in Colliers and I wish to say that as a short story writer you would make a good lunatic I have seen many peices of cheese in my life but of all the peices of cheese I have ever seen you are the biggest peice. I hate to waste a piece of stationary on you but I will."
This is the third volume of the series A La Recherche du Temps Perdu.
In this book, the author finishes the last step of the adolescence, with the deat...moreThis is the third volume of the series A La Recherche du Temps Perdu.
In this book, the author finishes the last step of the adolescence, with the death of art and that of childhood.
As historical background, the Dreyfus affair comes up into the narrative quite often, showing the characters that are against or in favor of this famous affair.
Page 7: Ces années de ma première enfance ne sont plus en moi, elles me sont extérieures, je n’en peux rien apprendre que, comme pour ce qui a eu lieu avant notre naissance, par les récits des autres.
Page 45: Je compris alors que l’oeuvre de l’écrivain n’était pour la tragédienne qu’une matière, à peu près indifférente en soi-même, pour la création de son chef-d’oeuvre d’interprétation, comme le grand peintre que j’avais connu à Balbec, Elstir, avait trouvé le motif de deux tableaux qui se valent, dans un bâtiment scolaire sans caractère et dans une cathédrale qui est, par elle- même, un chef-d’oeuvre.
5* Du côté de chez Swann 3* A l'ombre des jeunes filles en fleurs 4* Le côté de Guermantes TBR Sodome et Gamorrhe TBR La prisonnière TBR Albertine disparue TBR Le Temps retrouvé(less)
Even if Joyce´s books are not easy to be read, I liked this book in some way, even if my knowledge of Greek mythology is very poor.
Location 111: Seteph...moreEven if Joyce´s books are not easy to be read, I liked this book in some way, even if my knowledge of Greek mythology is very poor.
Location 111: Setephen Dedalus is my name, Ireland is my nation. Clongowes is my dwellingplace. And heaven my expectation.
Location 933: In any case Byron was a heretic and immoral too.
Location 1941: Some of the boys had then asked the priest if Victor Hugo were not the greatest French writer. The priest had answered that Victor Hugo had never written half so well when he had turned against the church as he had written when he was a catholic.
Location 2587: To speak of these things and to try to understand their nature and, having understood it, to try slowly and humbly and constantly to express, to press out again, from the gross earth or what it brings forth, from sound and shape and colour which are the prison gates of our soul, an image of the beauty we have come to understand - that is art.
Location 2593: Art, said Stephen, is the human disposition of sensible or intelligible matter for an esthetic end.
Location 2691: The simplest epical form is seen emerging out of lyrical literature when the artist prolongs and broods upon himself as the centre of an epical event and this form progresses till the centre of emotional gravity is equidistant from the artist himself and from others. The narrative is no longer purely personal. The personality of the artist passes into the narration itself, flowing round and round the persons and the action like a vital sea.
Location 2698: The artist, like the God of creation, remains within or behind or beyond or above his handwork, invisible, refined out of existence, indifferent, parting his fingernails.(less)
From BBC Radio 4 - Classical Serial: Dramatisation by Donna Franceschild of John Steinbeck's seminal 1937 novel about migrant workers in 1930s Californ...moreFrom BBC Radio 4 - Classical Serial: Dramatisation by Donna Franceschild of John Steinbeck's seminal 1937 novel about migrant workers in 1930s California whose dream of one day owning a place of their own is tragically destroyed.
This is the story of Sgt. Thomas Deacon, a port-waist gunner who has flying missions over Italy during World War II.
He is obsessed with the number of left missions he has until he completes the required fifty missions. It turns out that he suffers a mental breakdown and he is sent to a hospital in Bari in order to recover this mental health.
Pat Barker with her Regeneration trilogy deals much better with this question, in another scenario of course.
Opening lines: Sometimes in the long summer’s evenings, which are so marked a part of our youth, Harriet and Vesey played hide-and-seek with the younge...moreOpening lines: Sometimes in the long summer’s evenings, which are so marked a part of our youth, Harriet and Vesey played hide-and-seek with the younger children, running across the tufted meadows, their shoes yellow with the pollen of buttercups.
This is the love story between Harriet and Vesey, a love they captivated since their youth. However, their lives take a different course and Harriet married another man. But their love nevertheless persists even if this not brings a happy end to the story.
This is the first book of this author I've read and I'm planning to read more. The author has a vivid way of writing, portraying in a very sensible way the social paradigms of the beginning of 20th century.(less)
Opening lines: HE could endure the quiet waiting in the carriage no longer; it was easier to get out and walk up and down. It was now dark; the few sca...moreOpening lines: HE could endure the quiet waiting in the carriage no longer; it was easier to get out and walk up and down. It was now dark; the few scattered lamps in the narrow side street quivered uneasily in the wind. The rain had stopped, the sidewalks were almost dry, but the rough-paved roadway was still moist, and little pools gleamed here and there.