J'aime's Reviews > Heart of Darkness and The Secret Sharer

Heart of Darkness and The Secret Sharer by Joseph Conrad
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's review
Aug 03, 2011

did not like it
bookshelves: do-not-own, fiction, suspense-thriller
Read in October, 1994

When my English teacher announced that Joseph Conrad had learned English from a grammar book, it didn't bode well. This is one of those books that I had to read and absolutely hated. There aren't many. Usually I am just disappointed, or ambivalent. But I hated this one. The Secret Sharer is a useless little story about a man that sneaks aboard a ship at sea and is hidden there by his doppelganger. I'm sure there's some deep meaning or metaphor here that I am missing (my teacher would probably say so), but I was too bored to catch it. As to the infamous Heart of Darkness, Apocalypse Now was FAR FAR better. I just didn't get "the horror, the horror" from the book. Mostly it was a plodding "quest" down a river, with one dimensional characters and very little dialog of any consequence. Transferred to Vietnam, it suddenly takes on life. Skip the book; see the film.

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