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The Way We Live Now (Illustrated) (English Edition)
 
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The Way We Live Now (Illustrated) (English Edition) [Format Kindle]

Anthony Trollope
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Descriptions du produit

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Trollope's 1875 tale of a great financier's fraudulent machinations in the railway business, and his daughter's ill-use at the hands of a grasping lover (for whom she steals funds in order to elope) is a classic in the literature of money and a ripping good read as well.

Extrait

LET THE READER be introduced to Lady Carbury, upon whose character and doings much will depend of whatever interest these pages may have, as she sits at her writing-table in her own room in her own house in Welbeck Street. Lady Carbury spent many hours at her desk, and wrote many letters, -- wrote also very much besides letters. She spoke of herself in these days as a woman devoted to Literature, always spelling the word with a big L. Something of the nature of her devotion may be learned by the perusal of three letters which on this morning she had written with a quickly running hand. Lady Carbury was rapid in everything, and in nothing more rapid than in the writing of letters. Here is Letter No. 1; --

Thursday, Welbeck Street

DEAR FRIEND,
I have taken care that you shall have the early sheets of my two new volumes to-morrow, or Saturday at latest, so that you may, if so minded, give a poor struggler like myself a lift in your next week's paper. Do give a poor struggler a lift. You and I have so much in common, and I have ventured to flatter myself that we are really friends! I do not flatter you when I say, that not only would aid from you help me more than from any other quarter, but also that praise from you would gratify my vanity more than any other praise. I almost think you will like my ;Criminal Queens.' The sketch of Semiramis is at any rate spirited, though I had to twist it about a little to bring her in guilty. Cleopatra, of course, I have taken from Shakespeare. What a wench she was! I could not quite make Julia a queen; but it was impossible to pass over so piquant a character. You will recognise in the two or three ladies of the empire how faithfully I have studied my Gibbon. Poor dear old Belisarius! I have done the best I could with Joanna, but I could not bring myself to care for her. In our days she would simply have gone to Broadmore. I hope you will not think that I have been too strong in my delineations of Henry VIII and his sinful but unfortunate Howard. I don't care a bit about Anne Boleyne. I am afraid that I have been tempted into too great length about the Italian Catherine; but in truth she has been my favourite. What a woman! What a devil! Pity that a second Dante could not have constructed for her a special hell. How one traces the effect of her training in the life of our Scotch Mary. I trust you will go with me in my view as to the Queen of Scots. Guilty! guilty always! Adultery, murder, treason, and all the rest of it. But recommended to mercy because she was royal. A queen bred, born and married, and with such other queens around her, how could she have escaped to be guilty? Marie Antoinette I have not quite acquitted. It would be uninteresting; -- perhaps untrue. I have accused her lovingly, and have kissed when I scourged. I trust the British public will not be angry because I do not whitewash Caroline, especially as I go along with them altogether in abusing her husband.

But I must not take up your time by sending you another book, though it gratifies me to think that I am writing what none but yourself will read. Do it yourself, like a dear man, and, as you are great, be merciful. Or rather, as you are a friend, be loving.

Yours gratefully and faithfully,----

--------------------------
MATILDA CARBURY
----------
After all how few women there are who can raise themselves above the quagmire of what we call love, and make themselves anything but playthings for men. Of almost all these royal and luxurious sinners it was the chief sin that in some phase of their lives they consented to be playthings without being wives. I have striven so hard to be proper; but when girls read everything, why should not an old woman write anything?

This letter was addressed to Nicholas Broune, Esq., the editor of the 'Morning Breakfast Table,' a daily newspaper of high character; and, as it was the longest, so was it considered to be the most important of the three. Mr. Broune was a man powerful in his profession, -- and he was fond of ladies. Lady Carbury in her letter had called herself an old woman, but she was satisfied to do so by a conviction that no one else regarded her in that light. Her age shall be no secret to the reader, though to her most intimate friends, even to Mr. Broune, it had never been divulged. She was forty-three, but carried her years so well, and had received such gifts from nature, that it was impossible to deny that she was still a beautiful woman. And she used her beauty not only to increase her influence, -- as is natural to women who are well-favoured, -- but also with a well-considered calculation that she could obtain material assistance in the procuring of bread and cheese, which was very necessary to her, by a prudent adaptation to her purposes of the good things with which providence had endowed her. She did not fall in love, she did not wilfully flirt, she did not commit herself; but she smiled and whispered, and made confidences, and looked out of her own eyes into men's eyes as though there might be some mysterious bond between her and them -- if only mysterious circumstances would permit it. But the end of all was to induce some one to do something which would cause a publisher to give her good payment for indifferent writing, or an editor to be lenient when, upon the merits of the case, he should have been severe. Among all her literary friends, Mr. Broune was the one on whom she most trusted; and Mr. Broune was fond of handsome women. It may be as well to give a short record of a scene which had taken place between Lady Carbury and her friend about a month before the writing of this letter which has been produced. She had wanted him to take a series of papers for the 'Morning Breakfast Table,' and to have them paid for at rate No. 1, whereas she suspected that he was rather doubtful as to their merit, and knew that, without special favour, she could not hope for remuneration above rate No. 2, or possibly even No. 3. So she had looked into his eyes, and had left her soft, plump hand for a moment in his. A man in such circumstances is so often awkward, not knowing with any accuracy when to do one thing and when another! Mr. Broune, in a moment of enthusiasm, had put his arm round Lady Carbury's waist and had kissed her. To say that Lady Carbury was angry, as most women would be angry if so treated, would be to give an unjust idea of her character. It was a little accident which really carried with it no injury, unless it should be the injury of leading to a rupture between herself and a valuable ally. No feeling of delicacy was shocked. What did it matter? No unpardonable insult had been offered; no harm had been done, if only the dear susceptible old donkey could be made at once to understand that that wasn't the way to go on!

Without a flutter, and without a blush, she escaped from his arm, and then made him an excellent little speech. 'Mr. Broune, how foolish, how wrong, how mistaken! Is it not so? Surely you do not wish to put an end to the friendship between us!'

'Put an end to our friendship, Lady Carbury! Oh, certainly not that.'

'Then why risk it by such an act? Think of my son and of my daughter, -- both grown up. Think of the past troubles of my life; -- so much suffered and so little deserved. No one knows them so well as you do. Think of my name, that has been so often slandered but never disgraced! Say that you are sorry, and it shall be forgotten.'

When a man has kissed a woman it goes against the grain with him to say the very next moment that he is sorry for what he has done. It is as much as to declare that the kiss had not answered his expectation. Mr. Broune could not do this, and perhaps Lady Carbury did not quite expect it. 'You know that for worlds I would not offend you,' he said. This sufficed. Lady Carbury again looked into his eyes, and a promise was given that the articles should be printed -- and with generous remuneration.

When the interview was over Lady Carbury regarded it as having been quite successful. Of course when struggles have to be made and hard work done, there will be little accidents. The lady who uses a street cab must encounter mud and dust which her richer neighbour, who has a private carriage, will escape. She would have preferred not to have been kissed; -- but what did it matter? With Mr. Broune the affair was more serious. 'Confound them all,' he said to himself as he left the house; 'no amount of experience enables a man to know them.' As he went away he almost thought that Lady Carbury had intended him to kiss her again, and he was almost angry with himself in that he had not done so. He had seen her three or four times since, but had not repeated the offence.

We will now go on to the other letters, both of which were addressed to the editors of other newspapers. The second was written to Mr. Booker, of the 'Literary Chronicle.' Mr. Booker was a hard-working professor of literature, by no means without talent, by no means without influence, and by no means without a conscience. But, from the nature of the struggles in which he had been engaged, by compromises which had gradually been driven upon him by the encroachment of brother authors on the one side and by the demands on the other of employers who looked only to their profits, he had fallen into a routine of work in which it was very difficult to be scrupulous, and almost impossible to maintain the delicacies of a literary conscience. He was now a bald-headed old man of sixty, with a large family of daughters, one of whom was a widow dependent on him with two little children. He had five hundred a year for editing the 'Literary Chronicle,' which, through his energy, had become a valuable property. He wrote for magazines, and brought out some book of his own almost annually. He kept his head above water, and was regarded by those who knew about him, but did not know him, as a successful man. He always kept up his spirits, and was able in literary circles to show that he could hold his own. But he was driven by the stress of circumstances to take such good things as came in his way, and could hardly afford to be independent. It must be confessed that literary scruple had long departed from his mind. Letter No. 2 was as follows; --

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 6084 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 800 pages
  • Utilisation simultanée de l'appareil : Illimité
  • Editeur : Didactic Press (29 juillet 2014)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B00M9NZ3LM
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
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  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 EXCELLENT 17 mai 2014
Par Routarde
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
Un grand Trollope, prémonitoire puisque l'on y rencontre l'exact équivalent de Bernard Madoff, et qu'en plus le nom que porte le personnage est presque le même.
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Amazon.com: 4.3 étoiles sur 5  120 commentaires
139 internautes sur 142 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Forget Dickens, Trollope is where it is at! 3 décembre 1999
Par Mollie O. - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
I consider it to be a tragedy that Anthony Trollope's works are largely forgotten and overlooked by the reading public. So many well-educated people have never even heard ot him, although his novels are some of the best representatives of what a good novel should be! His beautiful storytelling in "The Way We Live Now" is just another example of Trollope at his best. A master raconteur, his vivid descriptions and cutting satire make this work one of his most controversial (at least at the time) and indeed one of his most respected. Though his longest work, it certainly does not seem long because he keeps the reader on his toes, so much so, that he is dying to know what will happen next. The best thing about the book, in my opinion, is the fact that it is difficult to find a character whom you can like. Each one, and there are many, has one or more particular faults, and we, as the readers, quickly realize that no one is perfect. Even the sympathetic characters are prejudiced at times. This, I believe, is a marked contrast to Dickensian personnages who much of the time are almost too angelic or cruel to be believable. Trollope give us a lesson in true human nature, one that will be very hard for me to forget.
35 internautes sur 35 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 "You need a special kind of man who understands the way we live now to lead you into that new world of peace and prosperity." 28 février 2009
Par Mary Whipple - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
Often considered Trollope's greatest novel, this satire of British life, written in 1875, leaves no aspect of society unexamined. Through his large cast of characters, who represent many levels of society, Trollope examines the hypocrisies of class, at the same time that he often develops sympathy for these characters who are sometimes caught in crises not of their own making. Filling the novel with realistic details and providing vivid pictures of the various settings in which the characters find themselves, Trollope also creates a series of exceptionally vibrant characters who give life to this long and sometimes cynical portrait of those who move the country.

Lady Carbury, her innocent daughter Henrietta (Hetta), and her attractive but irresponsible son Felix are the family around which much of the action rotates. They are always in need of money and Lady Carbury writes pap novels to support the family (and Felix's drinking and gambling). In contrast to the Carburys, and just as important to the plot, are the Melmottes. Augustus Melmotte, who has come from Vienna under a cloud of financial suspicions, has acquired a huge estate for himself, his foreign wife, and his marriageable daughter. Boorish, but determined to become a leader of society, Melmotte provides moments of humor for the reader, though he is scorned by an aristocracy which is nevertheless beholden to him for his investments.

When Melmotte becomes the major investor in a plan to build a railway from California to Mexico, Paul Montague, a young businessman who has invested in a railroad in America, arrives in town. A ward of Roger Carbury, cousin of Felix and Hetta, he soon finds himself in love with Hetta--and in competition with Roger for her hand. Felix courts the Melmottes' daughter for her fortune, and she falls in love with him while he dallies with a local domestic worker. Investors dash to buy shares in the Mexican railway, with their investments ending in the sticky hands of Melmotte, who has bigger plans.

Often addressing the reader directly, Trollope fills the novel with action and subplots which illustrate a wide variety of themes, often depicting his characters satirically to illustrate the social, political, and financial ills of the day. Ahead of his time for his depiction of the lively, intelligent woman whose role is defined (and limited) by her social and financial position, Trollope creates a number of resourceful women--and a number who are willing to do almost anything to marry a wealthy man. As is customary in Victorian novels, the good are rewarded here, and the evil are punished, but Trollope's characters, unlike those by Dickens, for example, usually control their own destinies. Broad in scope, thoughtful in construction, complete in its depiction of 1870s' England, filled with wonderful characters, and absolutely engrossing to read, The Way We Live Now is one of the great novels of the nineteenth century. Mary Whipple

The Warden, #1, Barsetshire Chronicles
Barchester Towers, #2, Barsetshire Chronicles
Doctor Thorne (Barsetshire Novels), #3
Doctor Thorne (Barsetshire Novels), #4
The Small House at Allington, #5
The Last Chronicle of Barset (Penguin Classics), #6, Barsetshire Chronicles
54 internautes sur 57 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A 19th Century Tale that Could Have Taken Place in 2008 16 mars 2010
Par Gary L. Misch - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
I bought this book based on a Newsweek recommended reading list. It concerns greed, pursuit of position, and fraud in late 19th century London, but most of the story line reads as if it could have been set in 2008, during the financial scandals on Wall Street. There is even a Bernard Madoff type figure in the story. There is also a BBC/PBS adaptation available on DVD. It is also excellent, but necessarily lacks some of the richness of detail that we find in the book. I don't think of Tollope's books as page turners, but I got to a point where I didn't want to put this down. Perhaps in a few years the material won't seem as fresh, but right now it's very timely.
44 internautes sur 49 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Brilliant 26 décembre 2001
Par M. S. Tucker - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
This work of literature encompassing life among the upper-crust of society in Victorian England is by far the best fictional representation I have ever read.
Trollope creates fantastic characters from the saintly/virginal society girl who pines for a lover, to a dastardly gentleman who squanders his families small fortune on rather unsavoury habits such as gambling and less than scrupulous women.
Most of this is told through the perspective of the matriarch of one family (Lady Carbury) who's only wish is that her son (a scoundrel at best) marry well and with any luck above his station (which he tries to sabotage at every turn) and for her daughter to marry into wealth at any cost whatsoever. That with the general gossip and the "Newcomer's from Paris" (The Family Melmotte) who left Paris hurriedly it seems under a rather dark cloud of suspicion will keep you glued to this book throughout. It is a very lengthy novel (481 pages) but you will be desperately turning the pages in the Appendix hoping for just a bit more!
28 internautes sur 31 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Those Who Forget the Past .... 18 décembre 2002
Par C.Allison - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché
Aside from the fact that this book takes place 125 years ago, it could be an end of year round-up for the corporate and political scandals of 2002. Trollope takes a deft look at the conditions of a culture that allow the Melmottes of the world to walk in and wreak havoc, (laziness, entitlement, greed) and one gets a very queasy feeling watching the bubble inflate, followed by the inevitable collapse of the whole house of cards. At least Melmotte doesn't take the whole country down with him. We may not be so lucky.
On the down side, I'm guessing (it feels like) these chapters were published in newspaper form before they were assembled for the book, as each chapter contains much unnecesary reiteration, and if you're reading straight through it can be annoying. In addition, Trollope doesn't have Dickens' delicious wit or keen insight into character, and some plots which seem to be headed for the interesting turn of event are instead allowed to dangle or resolve themselves dully. (I'm thinking particularly of Mrs. Hurtle here.) And for me, the fact that there is no one to take a particular interest in, no moral compass so to speak, left me feeling a bit adrift. Yes, people are deeply flawed. But one character who was perhaps a bit less flawed than the others would have given me something to hang my hat on.
Still, a page turner par excellence.
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