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The secret history of modernism / C.K. Stead.

By: Stead, C. K. (Christian Karlson), 1932-.
Material type: materialTypeLabelBookPublisher: London : Harvill Press, 2001Description: 230 pages ; 22 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 1860469310 (hbk.); 1860469418 (pbk.).Subject(s): New Zealand fiction | Authors, New Zealand | General fiction | New Zealand fiction -- 21st century | London (England) -- FictionGenre/Form: New Zealand fiction -- 21st century. | New Zealand fiction -- 20th century.DDC classification: NZ823.2
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Enhanced descriptions from Syndetics:

New Zealand writer Laszlo Winter thinks back to his time in London in the late 1950s. The Empire might be finished, but for young "colonials", England remains a mythical place that draws them from the farthest corners of the globe.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

New Zealand author.

Cover subtitle: A novel.

2 8 11 18 22 37 96 98 103 119 120 149

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Publishers Weekly Review

New Zealand writer Stead (Death of the Body, etc.) examines literary life in the middle of the 20th century through the prism of a writer's unrequited love for a friend, building his novel around an entertaining, engaging protagonist, Auckland novelist Laszlo Winter. Most of the book focuses on Winter's graduate student years at London University in the late 1950s and his ill-fated attraction to the vibrant, smart Samantha Conlan, who unfortunately has the hots for Friedrich Goldstein, a married Jewish journalist. Conlan and Goldstein embark on a passionate but problematic affair, forcing Winter to satisfy his urges with a call girl named Heather, who offers sex in exchange for lessons about Shakespeare in a series of unusual scenes. Winter next drifts into a relationship with another woman from his circle named Margot, but throughout their brief affair he remains troubled by the possibility that she may have had an incestuous relationship with her brother, Mark. In between the various couplings, Stead explores Winter's writing efforts, Conlan's brief encounter with T.S. eliot and the work of an Indian colleague named Rajiv as he researches a biography of Yeats. Winter's dry, droll sense of humor and intelligence make him intriguing, but the insular quality of some of the literary scenes limits his ability to carry an entire novel. The passages with Conlan occasionally catch fire, but in the end this is a book for literary aficionados who understand the intoxicating power of study, gossip and debate about books. (June) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved