Books Fiction Of Human Bondage (Tantor Unabridged Classics)

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Pages: Unknown

Language: English

Publisher: Tantor Media, Inc; Unabridged edition edition (31 Jan. 2011)

By: W. Somerset Maugham(Author) Steven Crossley(Narrator)

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" The modern writer who has influenced me the most." - George Orwell " One of my favourite writers." - Gabriel Garcia Marquez " A writer of great dedication." - Graham Greene


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  • By Antonio on 23 June 2013

    Of Human Bondage is widely regarded as Somerset Maugham's best work and I'm inclined to agree from the novels I have read of his so far. It was written in 1915 but is set around about the turn of the twentieth century for the most part when the second Boer war was being fought (1899-1902) evoking a vibrant picture of how life was in those long gone days. I found the social fabric which Maugham creates so vividly of particular interest, the times may have changed but human nature remains a constant. Maugham trained and qualified to be a doctor before he found his true vocation as a writer and with the book being semi-autobiographical it provides a wonderful insight of the medical practices of those times. The prose is beautifully constructed and without being verbose Maugham has got an uncanny knack of always finding the right words from his seemingly infinite vocabulary. Readers will find some of the vocabulary in this story 'archaic' as it has been rendered obsolete by the progression of the English language so will need to define the meanings of certain words used in the book. I don't want to include any spoilers in this review for readers who have yet to read this masterpiece but the book did have a happy ending, which was essential after all the hardship Philippe endured. The thing is when reading Maugham is that he creates his characters so cleverly and authentic that you cannot fail to empathise with them. I can highly recommend the authors short stories, some of which are the best short stories ever written. An underlying theme in a lot of Maugham's work is the class divide and the conflict it engenders and this is very apparent in this book. If you're like me you will be rooting for him throughout the whole story as he is the ultimate underdog who has to battle against the ill fortunes of life over which we have no control. He evokes sympathy in every chapter. Truly essential reading for any admirer of the literary genius who was Somerset Maugham. A longish book at 550 pages (kindle edition) but a beautifully written story which will transport you back to the times in which it was written. Maugham's greatest gift as a writer was his extreme perspicacity and perception to summarise the human condition that he succeeds at so elegantly in this book. A five star read by a five star author.

  • By GeordieReader on 24 June 2017

    The novel takes the protagonist Philip Carey from a recently orphaned ten-year-old to a man of twenty-eight who has been in more than a few difficult situations. It's a long book, but I can honestly say, I never found my attention wavering. The character of Philip is wonderfully portrayed and the quality of the writing makes his story absolutely riveting.

  • By Gaz on 29 July 2017

    A wonderful book. I expect a lot of people read it at a young age as part of a school curriculum but really, to empathise with the trials and tribulations of Philip Carey's life, you need to be a bit older with some life experience. What I love about Maugham's writing is his worldliness, and the spareness and unsentimentality of his prose. He brilliantly conjures up the extremes of emotion which Philip feels during his affair withMildred but always in an analytical, detached manner. In many ways the most emotional passages in the book relate to money and poverty rather than Philip's love affairs. The novel is also an amazing window into how the middle classes lived their everyday lives at the turn of the twentieth century and is worth reading for that alone.

  • By D. Glowacki on 1 February 2010

    As with all the previous reviewers l follow suit in highly commending this book.A wonderful,stunning ride through Philip Carey's life.It's narrative is exactly right and never moves from realism in spite of all the ups and downs of his journey.Maugham gets the male physc perfectly. Mad love one moment and then callousness when her sexuality differs in his eyes.His female relationships make for riveting reading,and particularly with Mildred,who drags his heart through the gutter in the most agonising fashion.Yet Maugham never veers into sentimentality.He leaves you to decide.l just could not get enough of this book in spite of it being 700 pages,short!!Along with Orwell and Greene,l intend to read his entire output.Highly recommended....

  • By Lee Gothard on 12 August 2008

    An absolutely superb book. Having read and loved George Orwell and discovered he was a fan Maugham I decided to have a look at Of Human Bondage. Having finished it and given myself some time to reflect, I can say that it is the best book that I have read so far. I was so drawn in to the story of Philip Carey and his journey into adulthood that the 700+ pages flew by. I will also echo the sentiments of other reviewers that despite the fact that Philip could not by any means be described as a hero I still found myself caring for him and always hoping for a positive outcome even when the situation seemed so very bleak for him. This I think is one of the books strengths that despite the actions of the characters they are so well written that I still found myself wanting the best for them even Mildred.I would highly recommend this book and consider it one of the classic pieces of literature which deserves to have been read by a much larger audience.

  • By lesley anne townsend on 28 April 2017

    An essential read for life - the message is simple - follow your instincts - live in the present - don't over think things

  • By Guest on 23 June 2017

    The book itself was a large book but it was in such small print I couldn't read it

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