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Books Read in 2017-2018 > Coming Up For Air - Non-Spoilers

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message 1: by Loretta, Moderator (new)

Loretta | 5983 comments Mod
Please use this thread for first impressions (non-spoilers), background and general information.


message 2: by Loretta, Moderator (new)

Loretta | 5983 comments Mod
As a child, Orwell lived at Shiplake and Henley in the Thames Valley. His father, Richard Walmesley Blair, was a civil servant in British India, and he lived a genteel life with his mother and two sisters, though spending much of the year at boarding school at Eastbourne and later at Eton in Britain. He particularly enjoyed fishing and shooting rabbits with a neighbouring family.[1]

In 1937 Orwell spent some months fighting in the Spanish Civil War. He was wounded in the throat in May 1937, by a Fascist sniper at Huesca.[2]

Orwell was severely ill in 1938 and was advised to spend the winter in a warm climate. The novelist L. H. Myers anonymously gave £300 to enable this and Orwell went with his wife to North Africa where he stayed, in French Morocco, mainly in Marrakesh, from September 1938 to March 1939. (Orwell never learned the source of the money and he accepted it only on condition that it be considered a loan. He repaid the loan, eight years later, when he began making money from the success of Animal Farm.)[3] Orwell wrote Coming Up for Air while he was in North Africa[4] and left the manuscript at his agent's office within a few hours of arriving back in England on 30 March 1939. It was submitted to Victor Gollancz, who had an option on Orwell's next three novels, in spite of the 'cold treatment which [Orwell] had been given when Homage to Catalonia was rejected.' In fact Orwell heard in April 1939 that Gollancz had reservations about the book, and was delaying a decision to accept it. The descriptions in the novel of a character who lectures at a meeting of Gollancz's Left Book Club, and of the meeting itself, were such that Gollancz 'could not have helped being offended by them.'[5] Nevertheless, the publisher did bring out the novel without demanding major changes and it was published on 12 June 1939. It was the last Orwell novel to bear the Gollancz imprint.

Taken from Wikipedia


message 3: by Lydia (new)

Lydia Corey Just started!


message 4: by Loretta, Moderator (new)

Loretta | 5983 comments Mod
Lydia Corey wrote: "Just started!"

I'm a few pages in too Lydia.


Kelly_Hunsaker_reads ... I just got a copy from the library, so I plan to read it soon. After I finish Lonesome Dove.\


message 6: by Loretta, Moderator (last edited Apr 08, 2018 01:52PM) (new)

Loretta | 5983 comments Mod
I haven't picked it up in a few days. I've been doing my "spring cleaning" so reading has taken a back seat for the past few days. I'll probably get back into this week. 😊


message 7: by Loretta, Moderator (new)

Loretta | 5983 comments Mod
I'm starting this book over again. I started this book over a week ago and I know I haven't given it a fair shake.


message 8: by MJD (new)

MJD | 372 comments Loretta wrote: "I'm starting this book over again. I started this book over a week ago and I know I haven't given it a fair shake."

Good move. Hope you enjoy it the second time around.


message 9: by Loretta, Moderator (new)

Loretta | 5983 comments Mod
MJD wrote: "Loretta wrote: "I'm starting this book over again. I started this book over a week ago and I know I haven't given it a fair shake."

Good move. Hope you enjoy it the second time around."


Fingers crossed MJD! 😊


message 10: by Lydia (new)

Lydia Corey I’m having a really hard time getting into this one. It’s just not grabbing me!


message 11: by MJD (new)

MJD | 372 comments Lydia Corey wrote: "I’m having a really hard time getting into this one. It’s just not grabbing me!"

Having read it I can say that it is written in a meandering style, which I felt had a flavor of Marcel Proust's writings. It certainly did not feel like I was reading the work of the person who wrote Animal Farm, which was a very straight forward story with little "fluff" to it (I honestly had to double check that it wasn't a different author who happened to have the same name, even the longer and more complex 1984 did not have such a meandering way to it).

Without giving out plot points in this thread, all I can say is that I felt myself asking "where is this going?" at times but I was rewarded in the end with what I felt was a good theme to contemplate.


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1984 (other topics)
Animal Farm (other topics)

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Marcel Proust (other topics)