Searching for: "David Beed"

  • Arnold Bennett

    Buried Alive (1908) is a witty satire by Arnold Bennett about a shy painter. Excerpt from the book: 'The peculiar angle of the earth's axis to the plane of the ecliptic—that angle which is chiefly responsible for our geography and therefore for our history—had caused the phenomenon known in London as summer. The whizzing globe happened to have turned its most civilized face away from the sun, thus producing night in Selwood Terrace, South Kensington. No. 91 was one of about ten thousand similar houses between South Kensington Station and North End Road. With its grimy stucco front, its cellar kitchen, its hundred stairs and steps, its perfect inconvenience, and its conscience heavy...read more

  • Arnold Bennett

    The Ghost: A Modern Fantasy (1911) is a novel by Arnold Bennett. Excerpt from the book: 'I see,' I observed, carrying my crushed remains out into the street. Impossible to conceal the fact that I had recently arrived from Edinburgh as raw as a ploughboy! If you had seen me standing irresolute on the pavement, tapping my stick of Irish bog oak idly against the curbstone, you would have seen a slim youth, rather nattily dressed (I think), with a shadow of brown on his upper lip, and a curl escaping from under his hat, and the hat just a little towards the back of his head, and a pretty good chin, and the pride of life in his ingenuous eye. Quite unaware that he was immature! Quite unaware...read more

  • Arnold Bennett

    A Great Man: a Frolic (1904) is a humorous novel by Arnold Bennett about the beginning of the marriage of another author: Henry Shakspere Knight. Excerpt from the book: 'On an evening in 1866 Mr. Henry Knight, a draper's manager, aged forty, dark, clean-shaven, short, but not stout, sat in his sitting-room on the second-floor over the shop which he managed in Oxford Street, London. He was proud of that sitting-room, which represented the achievement of an ideal. The rich green wall-paper covered with peonies in full bloom matched the magenta table-cloth of the table at which Mr. Knight was writing. The fine elaborate effect thus produced was in no way impaired, but rather enhanced and...read more

  • Thomas Hardy

    The Well-Beloved (1897) is A Sketch of a Temperament by Thomas Hardy. The novel tells the story of a sculptor's search for the ideal woman, through three generations of a Portland family. From the Preface: 'The peninsula, whereon most of the following scenes are laid, has been for centuries immemorial the home of a curious and well-nigh distinct people, cherishing strange beliefs and singular customs, now for the most part obsolescent. Fancies, like certain soft-wooded plants which cannot bear the silent inland frosts, but thrive by the sea in the roughest of weather, seem to grow up naturally here. Hence it is a spot apt to generate a type of personage like the character imperfectly...read more

  • Anthony Trollope

    Sir Harry Hotspur of Humblethwaite (1871) is a novel by Anthony Trollope. In this work Trollope offers psychological dissection of the issues of inheritance, filial duty, noblesse oblige, gentlemanly behavior, repentance and love, all hung upon the story of the wooing and losing of Sir Harry Hotspur's daughter (and heir to his property), Emily, by their 'scamp' of a cousin (and heir to Sir Harry's baronetcy), Captain George Hotspur. Artist Bio Author: Anthony Trollope (1815-1882) was an English novelist of the Victorian era. He wrote the novel series Chronicles of Barsetshire, and novels on political, social, and gender...read more

  • John Buchan

    Huntingtower (1922) by John Buchan is a novel about a 55-year-old grocer, Dickson McCunn, who has sold his business and taken early retirement, and is forced to become a reluctant hero. The story revolves around the imprisonment under false pretenses by Bolshevik agents of an exiled Russian noblewoman. The Scottish local community mobilizes to uncover and thwart the conspiracy against her, and to defend the neutrality of Scotland against the Russian revolutionary struggle. A plot based on espionage and covert violence is set against the seemingly tranquil Scottish rural backdrop. The novel contrasts the domestic characters, heroes and villains, with their more alien Russian counterparts....read more

  • William John Locke

    The Beloved Vagabond is a 1906 novel written by William John Locke. It is the most famous work of Locke. In nineteenth century France an architect decides to disguise himself as a tramp. Excerpt from the book: 'It is the story of Paragot, the belovéd vagabond—please pronounce his name French-fashion—and if I obtrude myself on your notice it is because I was so much involved in the medley of farce and tragedy which made up some years of his life, that I don't know how to tell the story otherwise. To Paragot I owe everything. He is at once my benefactor, my venerated master, my beloved friend, my creator. Clay in his hands, he moulded me according to his caprice, and inspired me with...read more

  • William John Locke

    The Morals of Marcus Ordeyne is a 1905 novel by William John Locke about a middle aged schoolmaster, who unexpectedly inherits money and a title. Walking through a park he finds a young girl weeping—a harem girl who has been brought to London for an arranged marriage, and has run away. Not knowing what else to do, Sir Marcus brings her to his home… Excerpt from the book: 'At this moment the chief's wife came into the library with the morning paper in her hand. On seeing me she rushed forward. 'Have you had bad news?' 'Yes. Is it in the paper?' 'I was coming to show my husband. The name is an uncommon one. I wondered if they might be relatives of yours.' I bowed acquiescence. The...read more

  • Basil King

    The Wild Olive (1910) is a novel by Basil King. Excerpt from the book: 'As he fled, he had a consciousness of abandoning something—perhaps of deserting something—which brought a strain of regret into this minute of desperate excitement. He felt he was giving up the fight. He, or his counsel for him, had contested the ground with all the resourceful ingenuity known to the American legal practitioner. He was told that, in spite of the seeming finality of what had happened that morning, there were still loopholes through which the defence might be carried on. In the space of a few hours Fate had offered him the choice between two courses, neither of them fertile in promises of success....read more

  • John Galsworthy

    The Patrician (1911) is a historical romance by John Galsworthy. Excerpt from the book: 'Light, entering the vast room—a room so high that its carved ceiling refused itself to exact scrutiny—travelled, with the wistful, cold curiosity of the dawn, over a fantastic storehouse of Time. Light, unaccompanied by the prejudice of human eyes, made strange revelation of incongruities, as though illuminating the dispassionate march of history. For in this dining hall—one of the finest in England—the Caradoc family had for centuries assembled the trophies and records of their existence. Here alone they had left virgin the work of the old quasi-monastic builders, and within it unconsciously...read more

  • Arnold Bennett

    Hilda Lessways (1911) by Arnold Bennett is the second book of the Clayhanger trilogy, which paralleled Edwin Clayhanger's story from the point of view of his eventual wife, Hilda. It tells the story from her coming of age, her working experiences as a shorthand clerk and keeper of a lodging house in London and Brighton, her relationship with George Cannon that ends in her disastrous bigamous marriage and pregnancy, and finally her reconciliation with Edwin Clayhanger. In part a re-telling of the plot of Clayhanger, the book includes some scenes from the earlier book from Hilda's...read more

  • Arnold Bennett

    The Roll-Call (1918) by Arnold Bennett is a novel written after the Clayhanger trilogy. It describes the young life of Clayhanger's stepson, George. George Edwin Cannon—he soon drops the surname Clayhanger, given to him upon his mother's marriage—is an architect, and represents what his stepfather Edwin Clayhanger wished to become. The characters of Edwin and Hilda are not developed further in this book: Edwin—now elevated to Alderman—appears only briefly. The central character displays an unattractive arrogance because of the wealth behind him. In an early chapter, he thinks about adding electric light to his London dwelling, and decides that he—or rather, his stepfather—can...read more

  • John Galsworthy

    Beyond (1917) is a romance novel by John Galsworthy. Excerpt from the book: 'On this grey February day he wore no overcoat; faithful to the absolute, almost shamefaced quietness of that wedding, he had not even donned black coat and silk hat, but wore a blue suit and a hard black felt. The instinct of a soldier and hunting man to exhibit no sign whatever of emotion did not desert him this dark day of his life. His face was narrow and weathered and thin-cheeked, with a clean-cut jaw, small ears, hair darker than the moustache, but touched at the side wings with grey—the face of a man of action, self-reliant, resourceful. And his bearing was that of one who has always been a bit of a...read more

  • D.H. Lawrence

    The White Peacock is the first novel by D. H. Lawrence, published in 1911. The novel is set in Nethermere (fictional name for real-life Eastwood) and is narrated by Cyril Beardsall, whose sister Laetitia (Lettie) is involved in a love triangle with two young men, George and Leslie Temple. She eventually marries Leslie, even though she feels sexually drawn to George. Spurned by Lettie, George marries the conventional Meg. Both his and Lettie's marriages end in unhappiness, as George slides into alcoholism at the novel's...read more

  • Anthony Trollope

    Lady Anna (1874) is a novel by Anthony Trollope. It describes Lady Anna's attempts to resolve the conflict between her duty to her social class and her duty to the man she loves. The story takes place at about the time of the First Reform Act of 1832. Lady Anna is the daughter of the late Earl Lovel. Her mother married him out of ambition, despite his evil reputation. Soon after their marriage, he told her that he had a living wife, which made their union invalid and their unborn daughter illegitimate. He then sailed to Italy and did not return to England for twenty years. During those two decades, Lady Lovel struggled to prove the validity of her marriage, and consequently her right to her...read more

  • Thomas Hardy

    The Hand of Ethelberta (1876) is a comedy novel by Thomas Hardy. Ethelberta was raised in humble circumstances but, through her work as a governess, married well at the age of eighteen. Her husband died two weeks after the wedding and, now twenty-one, Ethelberta lives with her mother-in-law, Lady Petherwin. In the three years that have elapsed since the deaths of both her husband and father-in-law, Ethelberta has been treated to foreign travel and further privilege by her benefactress, but restricted from seeing her poor family. The story reveals Ethelberta's career as a famous poet and storyteller as she struggles to support her family and conceal her secret—that her father is a butler....read more

  • Thomas Hardy

    A Laodicean (1881) is a novel by Thomas Hardy. Paula Power inherits a medieval castle from her industrialist father who bought it from the aristocratic De Stancy family. She employs two architects, a local, and a newly qualified from London: George Somerset, who represents modernity. Captain De Stancy, an impoverished scion of the family represents a dream of medieval nobility. Paula is attracted to both men. Somerset leaves believing Paula and the Captain have been married. Paula finds him and they marry. The castle burns down and Somerset proposes to build a modern house instead. Paula proves to be 'a Laodicean' (indifferent or half-hearted): 'I wish my castle wasn't burnt; and I wish you...read more

  • Arnold Bennett

    These Twain (1916) is the third book in the Clayhanger trilogy, and chronicles the married life of Edwin and Hilda. Edwin, now released from the controlling influence of his father, finds himself free to run his business and his life, a freedom that is diminished by his wife's caprices. She does not conform to the period's stereotype of a submissive wife—which is, of course, partly why Edwin married her. Hilda, who is rescued from virtual destitution by Edwin through their marriage, and who already has a child, is not a figure of passive gratitude, and has opinions on matters—such as Edwin's business—which would normally be a wholly male preserve. Edwin has his doubts about their...read more

  • Anthony Trollope

    John Caldigate (1879) is a novel by Anthony Trollope. Excerpt from the book: 'It was one of the disagreeable things which he had had to do before he could get away to the gold-diggings, and it was done. Now he had to say farewell to his father, and that would be a harder task. As the moment was coming in which he must bid adieu to his father, his heart was heavy within him. He felt sure that his father had no special regard for him;—in which he was, of course, altogether wrong, and the old man was equally wrong in supposing that his son was unnaturally deficient in filial affection. But they had never known each other, and were so different that neither had understood the other. The...read more

  • Anthony Trollope

    Castle Richmond (1860) is a novel by Anthony Trollope. It is set in southwestern Ireland at beginning of the Irish famine. Castle Richmond is situated on the banks of the Blackwater River in County Cork. The plot features the competition of two Protestant cousins of English origin, Owen and Herbert Fitzgerald, for the hand of Clara Desmond, the noble but impoverished daughter of the widowed Countess of Desmond, providing the novel's principal dramatic interest. Castle Richmond was the first of several novels by Trollope in which bigamy played an important role. The Irish famine and efforts by authorities to mitigate its effects are the subject of many scenes and the object of abundant...read more