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.
Now and then he would give me a glance and make the hairs of his stiff little
moustache stir quaintly. His eyes were green, and to this day every cat I see
reminds me of the exact contour of his face. What he was travelling for or what
was his ...
Davidson stole a glance in that direction and thought of making some sort of
reassuring sign to her, but she looked so bereft of senses, and almost of life,
perched up there, that it seemed not worth while. He disengaged his button with
During her extraordinary transit, as if everything in the hall were dirt under her
feet, her scornful eyes met the upward glance of Heyst, who looked away at once
towards the girl. She had not moved. Her arms hung down; her eyelids were ...
This, stripped of its facts, had been Heyst's life up to that disturbing night. Next
day, when he saw the girl called Alma, she managed to give him a glance of
frank tenderness, quick as lightning, and leaving a profound impression, a secret
The stranger turned his black, cavernous, mesmerising glance away from the
bearded Schomberg, who sat gripping the brass tiller in a sweating palm. “Many
people in the evening at your place?” Schomberg had recovered somewhat.
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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