Monday, 27 May 2013


This is a wonderful book and like the American lady said when seeing a play by Shakespeare for the first time, "Gee, it sure has a lot of quotes in it!'
Published in 1944 this book is about a charismatic man and his search for some meaning in his life.  It was written long before gap years when people headed off to India looking for a guru.  The thing about this book is that the author puts himself in as a character and makes a story of this man's comings and goings.  

He is a great social observer and as it's about American and British rich folk moving around their houses and playground in Europe after the Second World War it is full of what they were doing in the the days before "celebrities" - cocktail parties, Parisian bars, Riveria, mansions and country houses.
“American women expect to find in their husbands a perfection that English women only hope to find in their butlers.

Juan Gris, Stilleben mit Fruchtschale und Mandoline, 1919 [Wikipedia]

"I like manual labor. Whenever I've got waterlogged with study, I've taken a spell of it and found it spiritually invigorating"

Rij-Rousseau, .Jeu d'échecs.1917 [Wikipedia]

"I never spend more than one hour in a gallery. That is as long as one's power of appreciation persists."

Hermitage Museum [Wikipedia]      

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