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The End of the Affair
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The 100 Best Novels > Week 71- The End of the Affair by Graham Greene

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message 1: by [deleted user] (new)

This week brings us The End of the Affair by Graham Greene.

From the article

"There are many Greenes, and almost all of them – the thriller writer (The Third Man), the entertainer (Our Man in Havana), the contemporary political novelist (The Quiet American), the polemicist (The Comedians) and the serious religious writer (The Power and the Glory) – deserve consideration in this series. I’ve chosen The End of the Affair because it blurs the line he drew between his “entertainments” and his more serious work. The novel owes its inspiration to the conventions of romantic fiction while at the same time transcending genre. Crucially, it dates from Greene’s best years, the age of postwar austerity that also nurtured the previous author (No 70) in this series, George Orwell."

This was our classics read for Aug-Sept 2014. You can read our discussion thread here


message 2: by [deleted user] (new)

I find this an interesting choice. It wasn't very well received when we read it as a group. I personally gave it 2*s but I think many of us found it a bit boring and found the characters too sad and destructive.

(view spoiler)

Personally I would have chosen Brighton Rock over this as a much more interesting, compelling read.


message 3: by LauraT (last edited Jan 26, 2015 01:11AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

LauraT (laurata) | 13144 comments Mod
I was thinking the same think Heather! Nice how different people can have totally different impression of the same book!


Shirley | 4177 comments Yes, I wasn't particularly enamoured by this book when I read it. I may try again sometime, perhaps I just wasn't in the right mood at the time, I don't know...


LauraT (laurata) | 13144 comments Mod
Shirley wrote: "Yes, I wasn't particularly enamoured by this book when I read it. I may try again sometime, perhaps I just wasn't in the right mood at the time, I don't know..."

Definitly I didn't like it as well!


Bionic Jean (bionicjean) I found this in LP just over a week ago in a charity shop! Judging by these comments though it's perhaps a good job it's quite short. Perhaps it's of its time ... I'll read the discussion thread after I've read the book itself.

Gill - you may be getting it sooner than you think ;)


Pink I quite liked this book, but also had problems with it. I agree that Brighton Rock is a better overall book of his.


message 8: by Leslie (last edited Jan 26, 2015 04:14PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Leslie | 15985 comments I think I liked this more than many of the people in our Group Classic read, but I agree that if I was restricted to picking only one Greene book, I wouldn't have chosen this. However, it would have been hard to decide which one to pick! Brighton Rock is certainly compelling but The Ministry of Fear was also a 5* book for me. And being a lover of satire, Our Man in Havana is one of my favorites of his...


message 9: by [deleted user] (new)

I'm planning on reading Our Man in Havana very soon.

I did like the start of the article which I copied in the first post which explains why he picked this particular book


message 10: by Pink (new) - rated it 3 stars

Pink I plan on reading some more books by Graham Greene as well, so it's good to know which others you've liked Leslie :)


message 11: by Gill (new)

Gill | 5720 comments My favourite, out of those I've already read, is The Comedians. I've still got plenty of them to read though!


message 12: by Pink (new) - rated it 3 stars

Pink Yes he did write a lot didn't he! I don't think I'll ever read them all but I have about 5 that I'd like to get to.

I'm currently reading a collection of letters between Evelyn Waugh and Nancy Mitford, which has fabulous gossip about other literary figures.

This is a snippet Evelyn wrote to Nancy in 1950 -
'I am obsessed by poverty at the moment. But not so much as the multi-millionaire Graham Greene, the socialist, who I gather has been sniffing around Chantilly'

I love reading what authors were saying about each other!


Bionic Jean (bionicjean) LOL! I wonder who was best at bitching, Evelyn or Nancy! :D


message 14: by Pink (new) - rated it 3 stars

Pink Oh it's quite close, but I think Evelyn wins that one Jean!


Leslie | 15985 comments Pink wrote: "I love reading what authors were saying about each other!..."

I found that aspect was one I liked best when I read Words in Air: The Complete Correspondence Between Elizabeth Bishop and Robert Lowell -- in their case, they exchanged gossip about Robert Frost (they didn't like him), T.S. Eliot, Ezra Pound (they did like him), Marianne Moore etc.


message 16: by Greg (last edited Jan 29, 2015 12:11PM) (new)

Greg | 7376 comments Mod
Jean wrote: "LOL! I wonder who was best at bitching, Evelyn or Nancy! :D"

Ha ha Jean! :D

It is interesting to read commentary by writers who have a lot of character. Leslie, I'm more and more interested in reading that book of correspondence. It's just so long!

Years ago, I really enjoyed The Delicacy and Strength of Lace: Letters Between Leslie Marmon Silko and James Wright, a book of correspondence between the American poet James Wright and the Native American poet & writer Leslie Marmon Silko that she published after his death.


Leslie | 15985 comments @Greg - it is very long but it is also easy to read in small portions alongside other books.


Alice Poon (alice_poon) I liked The Heart of the Matter, but it was a long time ago when I read it.


Leslie | 15985 comments Alice wrote: "I liked The Heart of the Matter, but it was a long time ago when I read it."

That is one still on my TBR


message 20: by Greg (last edited Jan 30, 2015 07:50AM) (new)

Greg | 7376 comments Mod
I've only read three books by Greene so far: The End of the Affair, Our Man in Havana, and The Third Man. Each of them was vastly different, but I liked them all in their own ways. I definitely want to read more of him, particularly the one you mention Alice!


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