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Lawrence Durrell was one of the best-selling, most celebrated English novelists of the late twentieth century. The Alexandria Quartet is unquestionably his most admired work, at... Read more
Lawrence Durrell was one of the best-selling, most celebrated English novelists of the late twentieth century. The Alexandria Quartet is unquestionably his most admired work, at heart a sensuous and brilliant evocation of wartime Alexandria. In this world of corrupt glamour, L. G. Darley attempts to reconcile himself to the end of his affair with the dark, passionate Justine Hosnani - setting alight a beguiling exploration of sexual and political intrigue that the author himself described as 'an investigation of modern love'.
The Alexandria Quartet Paperback edition by Lawrence Durrell
Lawrence Durrell was born in 1912 in India. He attended the Jesuit College at Darjeeling and St Edmund's School, Canterbury. His first literary work, The Black Book, appeared in Paris in 1958. His first collection of poems, A Private Country, was published in 1943, followed by the three Island books: Prospero's Cell, Reflections on a Marine Venus, about Rhodes, and Bitter Lemons, his account of life in Cyprus. Durrell's wartime sojourn in Egypt led to his masterpiece, The Alexandria Quartet, which he completed in southern France where he settled permanently in 1957. Between the Quartet and The Avignon Quintet he wrote the two-decker Tunc and Nunquam. His oeuvre includes plays, a book of criticism, translations, travel writing, and humorous stories about the diplomatic corps. Caesar's Vast Ghost, his reflections on the history and culture of Provence, including a late flowering of poems, appeared a few days before his death in Sommieres in 1990.
Darley attempts to reconcile himself to the end of his affair with the dark, passionate Justine Hosnani - setting alight a beguiling exploration of sexual and political intrigue that the author himself described as 'an investigation of modern love'.
Winner of the Duff Cooper Memorial Prize, it is a document at once personal, poetic and subtly political - a masterly combination of travelogue, memoir and treatise. 'He writes as an artist, as well as a poet;
A guide to the landscape and manners of the island of Corfu.
'One of Lawrence Durrell's best books - indeed, in its gem-like miniature quality, among the best books ever written.' Freya Stark
'This charming idyll depicts the country life and cosmopolitan society of Corfu in the years immediately before the war .
Rich in invention, psychological truth and sheer entertainment, the five short novels that comprise The Avignon Quintet form one of the key works of an undisputed modern master.
'Another constellation of Mediterranean mysteries and memories.
Tells the story of the author's experiences on Cyprus between 1953 and 1956 - first as a visitor, then as a householder and teacher, and finally as Press Advisor to a government coping with armed rebellion.
Although Durrell spent much of his life beside the Mediterranean, he wrote relatively little about Italy; it was always somewhere that he was passing through on the way to somewhere else. Sicilian Carousel is his only piece of extended writing on the country and, naturally enough for the islomaniac Durrell, it focuses on one of Italy's islands. Sicilian Carousel came relatively late in Durrell's career, and is based around a slightly fictionalized bus tour of the island.
Having immersed himself in the islands of Rhodes, Corfu and Cyprus, Lawrence Durrell turns to Sicily, the largest of the Mediterranean islands, with its long and varied history and its spectacular archaeological remains.
In the first book of Durrell's Alexandria Quartet, the story of the mysterious and charismatic Justine is told by her lover, an impoverished Irish teacher who has sought refuge across the Mediterranean in Greece.
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