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The Man Within (Penguin Classics) Reprint Edition

12 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0143039211
ISBN-10: 0143039210
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Editorial Reviews

Review

Strikingly original ... a perfect adventure story of psychological treasure. -- The Nation

From the Inside Flap

Graham Greene?s first novel, written when he was twenty-one and published in 1929, tells the story of Andrews, a young man running and hiding from fellow-criminals he has betrayed, and Elizabeth, the young woman who shelters him and persuades him to give evidence in court. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: Penguin Classics
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics; Reprint edition (April 26, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0143039210
  • ISBN-13: 978-0143039211
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.6 x 7.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #968,241 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on March 24, 2003
Format: Paperback
*The Man Within* follows a fellow named Andrews through his horrifying experiences of paranoia and self-doubt, made all the worse by the fact that some people want to kill him. Andrews is wanted by the police in connection to the murder of an officer, pursued by his former co-smugglers because of his betrayal, and loathed by the locals because of his testimony against a group of popular criminals. There is only one person - the angelic Elizabeth - who provides him with any support, but she also creates for Andrews his biggest dilemma: to face death for someone whom he may never be able to love, or to find a new life, but without the one person who would make it worth living.
The writing does not show Greene at his peak, but it does demonstrate an early ability to craft brilliantly complicated characters and problems of morality in a manner similar to Dostoevsky..
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By brewster22 on April 26, 2005
Format: Paperback
I'm usually leery of favorite authors' first and last books. They never seem to be up to the standard of the books that come between. In Graham Greene's case, his last novel, "The Captain and the Enemy," certainly holds true to that rule of thumb. However, "The Man Within," his first, holds its own with any of Greene's fabulous later novels. This has all of the elements that would later become Greene trademarks: the conflicted and flawed male protagonist, the murky mood of intrigue and corruption, the delightful local flavor. You can just see Graham Greene novels filmed in crisp black and white (as many of them were). "The Man Within" is an excellent intro to Greene's work for a Greene neophyte and a welcome treat for die-hard fans.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By AK on May 22, 2000
Format: Paperback
The Man Within is a fantastic book about love and fear. It has elements of action, courtroom drama and good old-fashioned romance. The main character constantly assures us that he is a coward and unworthy of the love given him by the farm girl Elizabeth and also of his former associate whom he betrays in the begining of the book, yet he continues to perform uncharacteristic acts of bravery. His motives for these acts of bravery bring into question the true nature of courage and greatness. This book is surprising at every turn and yet every event, and every conversation makes total sense. It's a difficult book to put down, and you'll probably want to read it again.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Yonatan on May 23, 2010
Format: Paperback
The Man Within was Graham Greene's first published book, and a big best seller back in 1929. He was very young when he wrote it, 25 years old,and you can feel it, especially in the love scenes, but heck, it's still Graham Greene, and he writes like a god. All the elements that appear in his later, more famous books--great plot, lush description, beautifully turned sentences, themes of love and God and faith and betrayal, of struggles with the dark side of human nature, they're all here.

A young man called Andrews has ratted on his friends, a gang of smugglers. He hides out from them in the first place he can find, an isolated cottage. A beautiful and saintly girl lives there and gives him shelter. He falls in love with her. She urges him to do the right thing, to go to court and testify against the smugglers.

Since this is Greeneland, everything is in shades of gray; the man he has betrayed is actually the only man who has ever been good to him, a kind of father figure. And Andrews is no hero; he didn't rat on his gang because they were criminals, he ratted on them because they treated him like he was a nobody. And nobody wants these men to go to jail; the townspeople, the police, and the courts are rife with corruption.

Throughout the book, Andrews continually steps outside himself to question his motives and to struggle against his baser instincts. As the quote by Sir Thomas Browne says, "There's another man within me that's angry with me."

The Man Within begins as a standard Hollywood gangster movie, and ends as a soul-searing story of redemption. It's not The Heart of the Matter, it's not The End of the Affair, but it is a bit like going back in a time machine and seeing the first glimmerings of what turned out to be a world-straddling, God-given talent.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E-chan on March 18, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I came to this book because I was looking for a completmentary book for a literatue essay.

This book, while not very fast paced, is interesting since it's (to me), an introspective look at a Judas figure. Thematically, the book is mostly about redemption and forgiveness.

There's not much to be said, because each person's reading experience will differ, but I think that if you're looking for a book that you can mull over, this is a good book to read.

A more complete review of the book can be found here: [...] (I'm sorry, but I reviewed it in the context of another book).
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By HORAK on December 22, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Francis Andrews is on the run because he informed against a gang of smugglers of spirits - of which he used to be a member - by means of an anonymous letter to the customs, resulting in the death of a ganger who was shot during a set up. Now Carlyon and his men are after Andrews to take revenge. One night, as he is fleeing from his pursuers, Andrews comes across a cottage in Hassocks where he is given shelter by the beautiful Elizabeth Garnet.

As Elizabeth slowly grows to trust Andrews, she learns from him about his past, his violent father, smuggler and owner of the ship "Good Chance" with which he used to transported brandy to England. He also tells her how, after his father's death, he met Carlyon who suggested that he joins the crew. Andrew then tells Elizabeth how deeply he detested these men because he could never ascertain himself in front of them the way his father had. Betraying them was thus a way for him to show his fellow smugglers that he "is of importance now".

It is then that Elizabeth suggests that Andrews go to Lewes the following day where the Assizes are to be held and bear his witness to show his courage. Indeed, a difficult and dangerous decision for Andrews to take...

A powerful novel about courage, cowardice, love and faith. It is commendable that Mr Greene achieved to write such a mature novel at the age of only 23.
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