In Victory (1915) Conrad returns to the Malay Archipelago, to the setting of his first mature novel, Lord Jim, and in Axel Heyst he creates a hero who is in many ways similar to Jim, a noble altruist destroyed by his ideals. Heyst is emotionally crippled by the influence of his dead father, a sceptical philosopher who has bequeathed to Heyst an attitude to life summed up in the father's dying words: 'Look on - make no sound.' Despite this injunction Heyst allows himself to become inextricably involved with an English Cockney girl whom he rescues from Giancomo's Travelling Ladies' Orchestra and carries off to his isolated retreat on the island of Samburan. His action incurs the fatal wrath of Schomberg, the island's innkeeper, who sends in pursuit of Heyst three demonic strangers whose invasion of his island paradise leads rapidly to the novel's violent and tragic close.
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II IT was about this time that Heyst became associated with Morrison on terms
about which people were in doubt. Some said he was a partner, others said he
was a sort of paying guest, but the real truth of the matter was more complex.
I don't know if Morrison thought so, but the villagers had no doubt whatever about
it. Whenever a coast village sighted the brig it would begin to beat all its gongs
and hoist all its streamers, and all its girls would put flowers in their hair and the ...
Morrison never had any spare cash in hand. With his system of trading it would
have been strange if he had; and all these debts entered in the pocketbook
weren't good enough to raise a milrei on—let alone a shilling. The Portuguese
Morrison's despairing reserve had broken down. He had been wandering with a
dry throat all over that miserable town of mud hovels, silent, with no soul to turn to
in his distress, and positively maddened by his thoughts; and suddenly he had ...
Morrison had pulled himself together, but one felt the snapping strain on his
recovered self-possession. Heyst was beginning to say that he “could very well
see all the bearings of this unfortunate—” when Morrison interrupted him jerkily.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - DanielSTJ - www.librarything.com
Conrad managed to develop characters, imperfect, that all drove themselves forward on their own agendas to the story's conclusion- facilitating and enabling it along the way. He manages to keep the ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Cecrow - www.librarything.com
In the first part we get an outsider's view of Axel Heyst's character, actions and motives without being certain who he is or what actually drives him. I found this off-putting until the second part ... Read full review