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The Gadfly Paperback – 21 Sep 2006
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About the Author
Ethel Lilian Voynich, née Boole (May 11, 1864–July 27, 1960) was an Irish novelist and musician, and a supporter of several revolutionary causes. She was born in Cork. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
The story starts with an idyllic scene in a cloister garden with the sensitive, intelligent nineteen-year-old Arthur and his mentor, the priest Montanelli. Arthur is involved in a revolutionary youth movement and the dark clouds surrounding this apparent idyll soon begin to form. Montanelli turns out to be Arthur's father in the flesh as well as spiritually and betrayal and deceit follow Arthur into prison.
Arthur fakes his death and escapes to South America where the damage inflicted on his soul is compounded and joined by physical damage to his body. Years later, disturbed but defiant, he returns to Italy as The Gadfly. The story traces his revolutionary activities, his reunion with his childhood sweetheart and his continuing antagonism with the Catholic Church, personified by his father, now Cardinal Montanelli.
The story ends with a soaring climax that may be over-the-top to some of today's readers. But if you can temporarily park your 21st century cynicism, this is an emotionally rewarding and thought-provoking story that perhaps deserves more recognition.
It is a truly fantastic book. Reminds me strongly of "For whom the bell tolls", but is if anything, in my opinion, better.
If you can cope with the Victorian novel, buy this. Its popularity in Communist Russia in no way detracts from the force and impact of the story today. It should be far more widely read.
Only in the final stages of the book do things start to formulate towards a dramatic climax! So quite an unusual book in some ways but then that is why we read is it not? You never quite know what you are getting in to.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An emotionally evocative story of love and the struggle in the futile attempts to satisfy human desire. A beautifully written book.Published 20 months ago by KK
was a free download and it is great value , will continue with this book but is a little hard going for me but I cant complainPublished on 5 Jun. 2013 by COLIN H.
This is a book that during several decades was published in millions of copies - in the Soviet Union and its satellites. Read morePublished on 27 April 2013 by advokat