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Maurice Guest

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  96 ratings  ·  15 reviews
1922. The Australian author, Henry Handel Richardson's (Ethel Florence Lindesay Richardson), is best remembered for The Fortunes of Richard Mahony trilogy. Her novel, Maurice Guest, plays out the history of Maurice and Louise against the background of the musical life in Leipzig, of which she has intimate knowledge, having studied music there herself. The other figures in ...more
Paperback, 432 pages
Published February 1st 2007 by Echo Library (first published 1908)
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3.73  · 
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 ·  96 ratings  ·  15 reviews

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Aug 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Wanda, Bettie, Kim, Jemidar, Dagny
Recommended to Laura by: Karen
I am proofreading (R2-R3) this book for Gutenberg-Adelaide. I hope the corrections I've made will improve the manuscript's quality.

The original file is provided by InternetArcjive.

Free download available at eBooks@Adelaide.

This is the first book written by Henry Handel Richardson that I’ve ever read. And I absolutely loved it.

The plot describes the life of Maurice Guest, a music piano student who lived and studied in Leipzig in the end of the 19th century. This book is about obsession, jealousy
Nathan "N.R." Gaddis
Circumstances suggested I give this another go. Still pretty much not into it. Maybe one of you'll have results vary.

dnf. page 200.

I'm drawing a complete blank on this. Perhaps it's the reading context, that this old naturalist stuff is better read on a steamer across the Atlantic than a jet crossing the continent. At any rate, nothing in here attracted me enough to consider returning at a later date.

dnf. page 125.
May 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 1900-1950, reviewed
I don’t know whether this is just a sign of my ignorance, but I had literally never heard of the Australian novelist Henry Handel Richardson (a.k.a Ethel Florence Lindesay Richardson), until I came across a reference to her on this site. She sounded so intriguing that I decided to read her immediately, starting with her first novel, Maurice Guest (1908).

This is a very striking debut. The novel narrates—in slow motion—the tale of a young Englishman studying music in Leipzig in the 1890s, who stum
Jan 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
Today we went to see the film, or to be precise a reading of a screen play. The fact that it was 3 hours long, with over one hundred scene changes described by narration and remained gripping is testament to the possibilities of this story. The acting was fantastic and that too must reflect strength of the script.

There is a nice discussion of the book and author here.

Feb 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: kindle, music
3.5 An interesting premise to me, set in the post-Liszt musical study atmosphere of Leipzig, and using some of the author's actual experience. And it kept me reading, but was way too long for its story of obsessive and suffocating love. I grew to dislike Louise intensely, with physical beauty as her only attribute. Poor Maurice, always competing with the lure of the virtuoso violinist she really wanted. This just needed a good editor. But I will try one of her later novels at some point.
Aug 17, 2014 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Wanda by: Laura and Karen
17 AUG 2014 -- recommended by Laura. Spied on Karen's update. These ladies cannot be wrong.

Maurice may be found here -

Here -

Or here -
Oct 13, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is fascinating study of obsession, set in 1890s Leipzig: written in 1908, Maurice Guest ticks all the boxes for a study of obsessive love. See my review at
Laura Rittenhouse
This book could probably get 5 stars from me if it were 200 pages shorter (it's over 500 pages). Every bit of writing is good, the characters are believable and the story is interesting, but there is a too much repetition and dragging scenes out well beyond what is needed to convey the message. That said, part of the success of the writing is how the reader (if you give the book the time and attention it deserves) can get caught up in the angst of the characters, especially Maurice.

At its heart,
Jul 26, 2008 rated it really liked it
Had never heard of this book or its author before picking it up off my shelves in a Modern Library edition dated 1936. Turned out to be a real good story about love, obsession, friendship, loyalty and the life of ex patriate music students in Leipzig in the closing years of the 19th century. Written by an Australian woman (under the pen name Henry Handel Richardson), it was first published in 1908. It might be worth your time getting a new 'critical edition' which puts back all the material (I r ...more
Jan 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
An amazing book, though a massive emotional rollercoaster to read and devour. Depressing, obsessive, uplifting and shattering - but not for the faint of heart.
Aug 17, 2014 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Bettie☯ by: Laura
Mar 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook
Quite extraordinary! Yes, it's all about obsession, as just about any well-publicised review will tell you. But it's the sheer intensity that most struck me. I'd rate it up there with "Wuthering Heights". It's also a remarkable examination of the male psyche (don't be fooled by the name; Henry Handel Richardson's real name was Ethel Florence Lindesay Richardson!).

Just don't expect a tale of the Australian outback. Richardson was born in Melbourne, but the entire novel takes place in Leipzig in t
Jul 27, 2011 rated it liked it
How did this book vary so dramatically in quality? The description promised so much - fin de siecle genius, obsessive love, madness - and for the first two-thirds, the book merely plodded along. Yet, after shaping up to be my first one-star review since Jane Bowles's similarly-hyped "Two Simple Ladies," the book improved markedly in the last third, for a volume's worth of Proustian jealousy and dramatic confrontations! Apparently the last third of the book appeared almost a decade after the firs ...more
Robyn Foyster
Apr 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book was on my syllabus at Sydney University as part of the Australian Literature course taught by Dame Leonie Kramer.
It is the story about the genus of one and the mediocrity of another. It still rates as one of the most memorable books I've ever read. And I'm still intrigued by the fact that the author Henry Handel Richardson was in fact a woman.
Why is this not set in Australia? This disappoints me greatly.
James Dahlstrom
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Jan 04, 2009
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Apr 28, 2012
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Feb 03, 2015
Sharon Kelly
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John Black
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May 07, 2015
J Partridge
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Melinda Reed
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John Gibbs
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Ethel Florence Lindesay Richardson's use of a pen-name, adopted for mixed motives, probably militated against recognition especially when feminist literary history began. Maurice Guest was highly praised in Germany when it first appeared in translation in 1912, but received a bad press in England, though it influenced other novelists. The publishers bowdlerized the language for the second imprint. ...more
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