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Stunningly rejacketed as part of a major reinvention of this neglected 20th century master
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Published: 01 April 2010
Genre: Travel & holiday
WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY PAUL THEROUXSomerset Maugham's success as a writer enabled him to indulge his adventurous love of travel, and he recorded the sights and sounds of his wide-ranging journeys with an urbane, wry style all his own. The Gentleman in the Parlour is an account of the author's trip through what was then Burma and Siam, ending in Haiphong, Vietnam. Whether by river to Mandalay, on horse through the mountains and forests of the Shan States to Bangkok, or onwards by sea, Maugham's vivid descriptions bring a lost world to life.
There enough raw material to sate his imagination and the journey itself takes on the contours of a story worth recording. Among the coolly-observed descriptions of ruined pagodas there's the added treat of Maugham's catty thoughts on his craft
Sunday Herald (Glasgow)
Maugham's finest travel book...As the urbane novelist wends his way through tropic climes, he reads Proust under the mosquito netting, listens to stories of passion and madness from British colonials gone to seed, and bears up under the merciless sun, sipping at a gin and bitters and laying out a hand of solitaire
An elegant writer's notebook, imaginative, crammed with impressions and ideas received simply and directly, without the filtering screens of literariness or Englishness... he writes with majestic plainness
A delightful book - It contains vivid travel impressions, some autobiographical confidences, and the plots for a dozen novels
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Winner of the Hawthornden Prize and the Thomas Cook Travel Book Award
'What Ulysses is to the novel between the wars and what The Waste Land is to poetry, The Road to Oxiana is to the travel book.' Paul Fussell, Abroad
Stunningly rejacked as part of a major reinvention of this neglected 20th century master
'A great writer who spoke brilliantly to a whole generation. Prophet-like' Alec Guinness
A passionate, affectionate record of adventures and misadventures in the world's hottest metropolis.
William Somerset Maugham, famous as novelist, playwright and short-story writer, was born in 1874, and lived in Paris until he was ten. He was educated at King's School, Canterbury, and at Heidelberg University ...