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The Painted Veil (Vintage Classics) [Kindle Edition]

W. Somerset Maugham
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £8.99
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Book Description

Kitty Fane is the beautiful but shallow wife of Walter, a bacteriologist stationed in Hong Kong. Unsatisfied by her marriage, she starts an affair with charming, attractive and exciting Charles Townsend. But when Walter discovers her deception, he exacts a strange and terrible vengeance: Kitty must accompany him to his new posting in remote mainland China, where a cholera epidemic rages...

First published to a storm of protest, The Painted Veil is a classic story of a woman's spiritual awakening.

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Product Description


"A writer of some stature" (Graham Greene)

Book Description

Film-tie in edition

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 985 KB
  • Print Length: 186 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Digital; New Ed edition (24 Nov. 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099507390
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099507390
  • ASIN: B003V4ASJK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #32,530 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Spellings alert! 27 Mar. 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My comments relate to the Thinking Media (Spiritual Classics) version of this title. I have never read a book with so many typos/mistakes. Literally several per page - sometimes within the space of 2 or 3 sentences, often so bizarre it was hard to work out what the original sense was, making reading so absolutely infuriating that I don't know how I managed to keep going. Spoiled my enjoyment of the book completely. Don't be tempted to buy this version.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Things around you, at the time 1 Aug. 2013
Aspiring writers are often advised to write about that which they know - the things around them, at the time. This is never more clearly demonstrated than in the way people speak. Emily Bronte wrote in the way the family around her spoke. She would 'peruse an epistle', not read a letter. She would 'quit the chamber', not leave the room. She wouldn't listen; she would 'hearken' etc. In much the same way, this book, written for the middle and upper-class of its day, has its own distinctive language: 'I've got into a devil of a scrape' - 'He's a thundering good chap' - 'I'm most frightfully sorry; I don't seem to know your name'. (Try that at the end of your first date) But however one feels about the distinctiveness of period-language - of writing about things around you, at the time, this book - along with just about everything Maugham ever wrote, is a master-piece - a superb snapshot of how it was, then.
It is written in film-like short scenes: how from bad can come good/how two people can discover love and mutual respect from facing together a life-threatening experience (a fight against Cholera). In that sense, it's a book about caring. In that sense, the storyline is incremental, and grows upon one, layer upon layer. (Theme: A familiar feature of Maugham's writing. 'The Razor's Edge', is to do with the quest for spiritual rather than material happiness. 'Of Human Bondage', is autobiographical fiction, and in that genre is perhaps the most thematic 'book of knowledge' ever written - 640 pages)
Maugham writes succinctly. In page 25, two years pass by in one line. Walter: 'A person to whom small talk did not come easily'. Charlie Townsend: (The cad) 'who has made a science of popularity'.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Ending changed - Buy it but NOT THIS EDITION 22 April 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a great book but please don't buy this edition. Not only are there countless typos - mainly small mistakes on every page, as if they have run a spellcheck which picks up the larger mistakes but misses things, putting "out" instead of "but" and "hit" for "hint" - but much worse, the ending is changed. I only realised this after comparing notes at my book club and complaining about an issue I had with the ending which slightly marred an otherwise great book. No spoilers but the last paragraph is 1/2 the length of the original and changes some words - including the very last word of the book - which I can only think makes it more acceptable for an American Christian audience - "peace" becomes "God". Buy it - but buy Somerset Maugham's version not some American publisher's idea of what it should have said.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful edition! 6 Jun. 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Really poor edition - full of spelling mistakes!
My comments relate to the Spiritual Classics from thINKing version of this WONDERFUL classic. I have never read a book with so many typos/mistakes. Often it was hard to work out what the original meaning was, making reading very frustrating.
The original book is awesome and would have been a joy to read if I had bought a different edition.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review by Patricia's Particularity 2 Aug. 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I, like many others, saw the movie first (I am a huge Edward Norton fan!). I have come to learn that when I see a movie first that when I pick up the book I have to look at the book as it is completely separate from the movie, and infact is not tied to the movie at all - this is the only way I am able to give a book a fighting chance. That being said, I loved this book (and the movie too). It was actually nice to envision the actors from the movie, in terms of physical looks, while reading the book.

Kitty is spoiled rotten, having a life of great privileged. Kitty also prides herself as being very independent, especially from her mother's 'demands' and 'disappointments' that she is not married yet. To get away from her 'overbearing' mother (at least overbearing in Kitty's opinion) she marries Walter Fane, who she does not love and barely likes. Upon their marriage they move straight to China as Walter's work as a scientist is. Bored in China, Kitty meets Charles Townsend, a politician; soon they start a torrid love affair! Despite Kitty's new found happiness, Walter finds out. In an attempt to tear Kitty away from Charles Townsend, he uproots them to the center of a Cholera epidemic. Bitter against Walter, Kitty finds her new life unbearable. However, in time she is able to see another side of Walter as he works to save the town's infested water supply and many lives.

I would not say that this is a book about a love affair (as Kitty and Charles Townsend have), but more of self discover, as Kitty finds who she is and what she is capable of bearing. All the characters are very well written. I loved and hated Kitty all at the same time; I felt sorry for Walter; and I hated and like Charles Townsend. The plot unfolds expectantly, as W.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Good
Read it Read it Read it !!! Good edition
Published 16 days ago by mand
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Beautifully written, evocative story.
Published 1 month ago by Victoria Green
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
it was very good.
Published 2 months ago by Monica Roberts
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Haunting morality tale
Published 3 months ago by S. ALLMAN
4.0 out of 5 stars The aftermath of an affair between expats in 1920s Hong Kong
The novel begins with a meek British scientist stationed in 1920s Hong Kong discovering that his pretty, but naive, young wife is having an affair with one of the other... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Ruffian McRuffian
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
one of my top authors wonderful read . Film with Naomi Watts excellent also
Published 4 months ago by Nicola Heather
1.0 out of 5 stars One Star
Too many words printed incorrectly make some sentences unreadable.
Published 5 months ago by AVoice
5.0 out of 5 stars tragic and heartfelt
Deeply moving and thoroughly engaging. The enlightenment of a spoilt young woman through the tragic death of her husband. Read more
Published 6 months ago by arlene blakeman
1.0 out of 5 stars Insult to the author. Take it down Amazon!
An insult to the author! Amazon you should take this off your website as it doesn't reflect well on you! Please don't waste your money on this edition. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Amanda Webster
5.0 out of 5 stars A great read!
Highly recommended
Published 7 months ago by CC28
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