Aaron Gertler's Reviews > Of Human Bondage

Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham
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it was amazing

I can't quote the last lines without spoiling the ending, but they are some of the most beautiful I've encountered in English literature. And the rest of the story is worth reading to reach them.

I don't often like stories about hapless British semi-gentlemen (Great Expectations did nothing for me), but Philip earns his haplessness through struggle, and eventually overcomes it, and actually does a few useful things for other people, perhaps even leaving the world better than it would have been without him. To me, this justifies all the fumbling around in the middle third, especially when we get lines like this to tide us over:

"He could not be positive that reason was much help in the conduct of life. It seemed to him that life lived itself."

(I wholly disagree with the sentiment, but the prose, oh, the prose!)
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
July 10, 2018 – Shelved

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