Brideshead Revisited: The Sacred and Profane Memories of Captain Charles Ryder Paperback – 30 Mar 2000
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"Waugh's most deeply felt novel . . . "Brideshead Revisited "tells an absorbing story in imaginative terms . . . Mr. Waugh is very definitely an artist, with something like a genius for precision and clarity not surpassed by any novelist writing in English in his time." -"New York Times" "A many-faceted book . . . Beautifully [written] by one of the most exhilarating stylists of our time." -"Newsweek" "First and last an enchanting story . . . "Brideshead Revisited" has a magic that is rare in current literature. It is a world in itself, and the reader lives in it and is loath to leave it when the last page is turned." -"Saturday Review" "Evelyn Waugh's most successful novel . . . A memorable work of art." -from the Introduction by Frank Kermode
A gripping story of love, religion, class and war
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Top Customer Reviews
According to Waugh himself, the book was intended to show the operation of Divine Grace - 'that unmerited and unilateral action by which the Lord draws souls to himself.' This book is no second-rate miraculous conversion experience story - it is not a badly redone version of the Road to Damascus. But this is a religious (not a merely spiritual) book, and to take it as something else is to refer to a different text.
Other reviewers have stressed (too much, perhaps) that this is a social elegy, which it is. Waugh wrote B.R. during WWII, a time of great privation, and he describes in mouth-watering detail the luxuries which were denied him in combat. (He did see military action.) This book mourns the passing of an age of "Great Houses," for lack of a better term - an age of remarkable splendour, and of Roman beauty. Say what you like about its merits vis-a-vis the world which replaced it, after the war - no one can deny that it was beautiful.
That, in turn, leads to perhaps the strongest affirmation which can be made of this book. It is one of the most singularly well-written novels to grace the English language. To call it prose is to do Mr Waugh a disservice.Read more ›
When the novel opens at the end of World War II, Capt. Charles Ryder and his troops, looking for a billet, have just arrived at Brideshead, the now-dilapidated family castle belonging to Lord Marchmain, a place where Charles Ryder stayed for an extended period just after World War I, the home of his best friend from Oxford, Lord Sebastian Flyte. The story of his relationship with Sebastian, a man who has rejected the Catholicism imposed on him by his devout mother, occupies the first part of the book. Sebastian, an odd person who carries his teddy bear Aloysius everywhere he goes, tries to escape his upbringing and religious obligations through alcohol. Charles feels responsible for Sebastian's welfare, and though there is no mention of any homosexual relationship, Charles does say that it is this relationship which first teaches him about the depths of love.
The second part begins when Charles separates from the Flytes and his own family and goes to Paris to study painting. An architectural painter, Charles marries and has a family over the next years.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Brilliant I am really missing it now that I have finished reading..it..Published 1 month ago by Mrs C Coup
The book took a long time to come, when it arrived all the pages where cut to different lengths and looked really messyPublished 2 months ago by Jack Walters
I saw the TV production but never read the book. Not as heavy as you might think, and fascinating.Published 2 months ago by sparkle1
A great story, beautifully told - and sticks so closely to the TV version!Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
An all-time classic - witty and wonderful, which evokes at various times laughter, sadness, romance, pathos, and a gamut of unexpected emotions by way of its beautifully crafted... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Robert
This is the second Evelyn Waugh book I've read, and it is nothing like the first (Decline and Fall). Read morePublished 4 months ago by K. Symes
The first half is excellent but it gets boring near the end and not as vividly described. I did finish it though and am now busy watching the mini-series with Jeremy Irons. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Jenny (South Africa)
It was recommended to me by one of my friend's friend as I'm a big fan of Downton Abbey but after reading 30 pages I gave up...boring :(Published 5 months ago by lolo