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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After telling him that they wished to render his stay among the islands as pleasant
as possible, and that they were ready to assist him in his plans, and so on, and
after receiving Heyst's thanks —you know the usual kind of conversation—he ...
“Upon my word, I don't know why I have been telling you all this. I suppose
seeing a thoroughly white man made it impossible to keep my trouble to myself.
Words can't do it justice; but since I've told you so much I may as well tell you
The T. B. C. Co. went into liquidation, as I began by telling you. The Tesmans
washed their hands of it. The Government cancelled those famous contracts. The
talk died out, and pres– ently it was remarked here and there that Heyst had
But he put on a sinister expression to tell us that Heyst had not paid perhaps
three visits altogether to his “establishment.” This was Heyst's crime, for which
Schomberg wished him nothing less than a long and tormented existence.
Observe the ...
Davidson was telling us all about it afterward. Heyst said that his father had
written a lot of books. He was a philosopher. “Seems to me he must have been
something of a crank, too,” was Davidson's comment. “Apparently he had
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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