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|Print List Price:||£8.99|
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Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
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The Loved One: An Anglo-American Tragedy (Penguin Modern Classics) Kindle Edition
|Length: 178 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled|
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Top Customer Reviews
Characters ranging from a young englishman attempting to make his way forward in Hollywood, to Mr Joyboy the accomplished mortician, his mother and her parrot cannot fail to draw the reader in and entertain in a way that only Evelyn Waugh could.
This book is a must for anyone who has enjoyed the more popular 'Decline and Fall' or Brideshead revisited' and is an excellent introduction to the author for those who have not read any of his other works.
Placing one of his upper class wasters in such a foreign world as LA is a stroke of genius and the culture clash is brilliantly exposed. Dennis Barlow is the perfect stoic anti-hero, instantly loveable and detestable at once.
If you've read any of Waugh's other long novels, you'll love every page, if not this is a perfect introduction to a master of storytelling.
The characters are mildly comic but hardly rounded. The writing is nicely composed technically - highly proficient, yet the story lacks a heart or any genuine humour. Also, Waugh succumbs to a very British literary weakness of the early to mid 20th century: quoting old English poetry with gusto. Yes, the character of Derek is supposedly a poet of sorts, but the continued poetic referencing, to me, just feels pretentious and dated.
All in all, not as sharp and witty as Waugh might have imagined. Cynical, disposable, rather empty, chewing gum stuff.
Once this is over and we meet the hero working at the pet mortuary, the book takes off and keeps flying.
Perfect reading for a train journey. Actually, perfect reading full stop.
Written with consummate ease of course and feels rather a privilege to read it.
Hugely entertaining, especially re the GB/US cultural divide.
However what can one say about Waugh. The plot is off the wall, but the story is placed in the USA and therefore seemed
natural. I would recommend this book for a light read.
This isn't set to last and in fact doesn't as very early on Sir Francis is fired from his Hollywood job at Megalopolitan Studio's and decides to take his own life, in doing so his nephew Dennis is left in charge of the funeral and ends up in the necropolis `Whispering Glades' where death seems like a wonderful option and can have all the finest trimmings and sometimes come out looking better than you did when you were alive. "Why, if he'd sat on an atom bomb, they'd make him presentable." That line and its delivery made me laugh for about ten minutes. It's very dark humour with sprinklings of almost campness throughout.
It is going through the rigmarole of funeral procedures and arrangements for his uncle that Dennis meets the beautiful Aimee Thanatogenos, a corpse cosmetician, and becomes besotted starting not only one of the funniest and slightly outrageous books I have had the good fortune of reading, but also the unlikeliest but most readable love triangles between Dennis, Aimee and an embalmer called Mr Joyboy that leads to a rather shock ending I wasn't expecting.Read more ›
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