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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It was the last literary thought which had occurred to me before the doors of the
Temple of Janus flying open with a crash shook the minds, the hearts, the
consciences of men ali over the world. Such coincidence could not be treated
I don't mean the courage of self-assertion, either moral or physical, but the mere
way of it, the trick of the thing, the readiness of mind and the turn of the hand that
come without reflection and lead the man to excellence in life, in art, in crime, ...
Often in the course of years an expressed sentiment, the particular sense of a
phrase heard casually, would recall him to my mind so that I have fastened on to
him many words heard on other men's lips and belonging to other men's less ...
... the temperament of a company promoter. Engineers came out, coolies were
imported, bungalows were put up on Samburan, a gallery driven into the hillside,
and actually some coal got out. These manifestations shook the soberest minds.
His head being full of Heyst, it occurred to him that she might be aware of other
facts. This was a very amazing discovery to any one who looked at Mrs.
Schomberg. Nobody had ever suspected er of having a mind, I mean even a little
of it, ...
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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