Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.)'s Reviews > The Forsyte Saga

The Forsyte Saga by John Galsworthy
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Apr 28, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: british-literature, historical-fiction, read-in-2009, british-authors-translators, my-western-canon, nobel-nba-booker-pulitzer-hugo
Recommended to Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) by: lonebearimages@gmail.com
Read in August, 2009

This is a titanic masterpiece of a multi-generational story of a fictional English family that spans the Victorian, Edwardian, and post-World War I eras. For the first one-hundred pages or so, I found myself having to frequently refer to the Forsyte family genealogical chart; however, by the end of the book I knew all of the characters and their place in the family intimately. Like all families, Galsworthy has created a world of very real and human characters in the Forsyte family; a family bound as much by their name, and at times even their dysfunction. Many of the novel's characters exhibit the full range of emotion and feeling, including: love, greed, hatred, passion, jealousy, lust, truth, honesty, betrayal, and so forth; it is all there within this family - The Forsytes. Once started, I could not put this book down easily; it is that compelling. I fully understand why John Galsworthy was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1932. For those who love novels of and about England, The Forsyte Saga is a must read.
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Reading Progress

03/23 marked as: read

Comments <span class="smallText"> (showing 1-9 of 9) </span> <span class="smallText">(9 new)</span>

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Gabriele Wills I really enjoyed the books as well. (A series of books when I bought them decades ago. Are they in one novel now?). They were among the favourites of my British grandfather-in-law, who was born in 1882. I expect that he could relate to those books, as he grew up in that society.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) Gabriele wrote: "I really enjoyed the books as well. (A series of books when I bought them decades ago. Are they in one novel now?). They were among the favourites of my British grandfather-in-law, who was born in..."

Gabriele, the edition I have (the Barnes and Noble Library of Essential Reading) has the three novels separated by two "Interludes" more like novellas that smooth the transition from novel to novel. An absolutely fabulous collections. What a plot!


message 3: by Gail (new)

Gail Christopher, thanks for the great review here. I enjoyed this quite some time ago, but not quite in the Nobel Prize sort of thing. Of course, that could quite possibly be my lack, rather than Galsworthy's.

I thought his portrayal of Soames Forsyte was amazing in its fullness...in a more ordinary novel, Soames would have been simply one of those characters we love to hate, rather than a person we might actually encounter in real life. In fact, I thought his ability to create living characters far outshone (outshined? Surely not.) his plotting. But again, that may be my somewhat jaded opinion, formed by way too many Victorian novels.


message 4: by SarahC (last edited Mar 11, 2010 05:44PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

SarahC I love many things about these books. The loved the father and son Jolyons.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) Sarah wrote: "I love many things about these books. The loved the father and son Jolyons."

Isn't that the truth, the two Jolyons are just wonderful men -- from fore to aft. Excellent observation! Cheers! Chris


message 6: by Jamie (new)

Jamie Collins Christopher, I corrected the spelling of the title.


Captain Sir Roddy, R.N. (Ret.) Jamie wrote: "Christopher, I corrected the spelling of the title."

Well, bless me buttons! That didn't take long at all! Thank you, Jamie; that's terrific! Cheers! Chris


Lady Daisy Barksby- Pryce Love the Forsytes! (And I'm in the Pro- Irene camp! ;))


Bonnie Landino Watched the series on Roku , Netflix. Very good. Now I have to read the book!


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