The Country House

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Kessinger Publishing, Apr 1, 2005 - Fiction - 316 pages
5 Reviews
1907. English novelist and playwright, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1932, Galsworthy became known for his portrayal of the British upper middle class and for his social satire. The novel begins: The year was 1891, the month October, the day Monday. In the dark outside the railway station at Worsted Skeynes Mr. Horace Pendyce's omnibus, his brougham, his luggage-cart, monopolized space. The face of Mr. Horace Pendyce's coachman monopolized the light of the solitary station lantern. Rosy-gilled, with fat close-clipped grey whiskers and inscrutably pursed lips, it presided high up in the easterly air like an emblem of the feudal system. See other titles by this author available from Kessinger Publishing.

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Review: The Country House

User Review  - Nick - Goodreads

I know that John Galsworthy was awarded the Nobel for literature in 1931. And I haven't read what people seem to consider his best work, the Forsyte Saga trilogy (only saw the movie). These being said ... Read full review

Review: The Country House

User Review  - Matthew Mainster - Goodreads

Wow. Wanted to like this so much because I loved the bbc's forsyte saga miniseries, but this was dullsville. Nothing happened! Only read a third of it. Read full review

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About the author (2005)

At age 28, after a gentlemanly education at Harrow and Oxford, and a training at law, Galsworthy settled into simultaneous careers as a novelist and a playwright. The Silver Box, Galsworthy's first successful drama, was staged in 1906, the year he published the first volume of what was to become The Forsyte Saga. His one-word titles - Justice (1910), Strife (1909), Loyalties (1922)---suggest the nature of Galsworthy's artistic ambition: to generalize a social indictment, keeping faith with the objective methods of naturalism. In each, Galsworthy favors an austere irony and unresolvable situations, and balanced moral positions are displayed in the cabinetwork of "well-made" playwrighting. Reputed to have led to reforms in its time, his realism today seems contrived to produce aesthetic distance and a sense of resignation that is precisely what contemporary political dramatists strain hardest to avoid. Not surprisingly, critics have come away from revivals with the sense that (especially in his spare language) Galsworthy anticipates Harold Pinter rather than more socially engaged playwrights. Galsworthy wrote novels and plays alternately throughout his life. His masterwork, The Forsyte Saga, begun in 1906 and finished in 1928, and consisting of six separate novels and two linking interludes, is the most famous example of the sequence novel in English literature. It is a study of the property sense, the possessive spirit, in different individuals and generations of English middle-class society. He also completed a second trilogy dealing with the Forsyte family, called A Modern Comedy (1928). His last trilogy, a study of the Charwell family, is called End of the Chapter (1933). Galsworthy's later years brought him many honors, including the presidency of P.E.N. and honorary degrees from Oxford, Cambridge, and several other universities. After World War I, he was offered a knighthood, which he refused. He did, however, accept the Order of Merit in 1929, and in 1932 he was awarded the Nobel Prize. He was, however, too ill to attend the Nobel ceremony and died within two months of receiving the award. Although his posthumous reputation had waned, the centenary of his death, in 1967, brought a re-creation of The Forsyte Saga on British and American television in serial form. Interest in him skyrocketed, and the Forsyte novels again became bestsellers. With new popularity came fresh critical analysis. Pamela Hansford Johnson called The Forsyte Saga "a work of profound social insight and patchy psychological insight" (N.Y. Times). His critical writings include The Inn of Tranquility: Studies and Essays (1911) and Author and Critic.

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