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The Skeptical Romancer: Selected Travel Writing (Vintage International) Paperback – February 14, 2012
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“An expert craftsman. . . . His style is sharp, quick, subdued, casual.” —The New York Times
“Maugham has given infinite pleasure and left us a splendour of writing which will remain for as long as the written English word is permitted to exist.” —The Daily Telegraph
“The modern writer who has influenced me most is Somerset Maugham.” —George Orwell
“Maugham remains the consummate craftsman. . . . [His prose is] so compact, so economical, so closely motivated, so skillfully written, that it rivets attention from the first page to last.” —The Saturday Review of Literature
“It is very difficult for a writer of my generation, if he is honest, to pretend indifference to the work of Somerset Maugham. . . . He was always so entirely there.” —Gore Vidal
About the Author
Pico Iyer is the author of many books about travel, including Video Night in Kathmandu. His most recent book is The Open Road.
Top Customer Reviews
"I admire the strenuous tourist who sets out in the morning with his well-thumbed Baedeker to examine the curiosities of a foreign town, but I do not follow in his steps; his eagerness after knowledge, his devotion to duty, compel my respect, but excite me to no imitation. I prefer to wander in old streets without a guidebook, trusting that fortune will bring me across things worth seeing; and if occasionally I miss some monument that is world-famous, more often I discover some little dainty piece of architecture, some scrap of decoration, that repays me for all I lose."
"No one moved expect to roll himself a cigarette. The sky was blue and the air warm and comforting. Life seemed good enough, and above all things easy. There was no particular cause to trouble. What is the use of hurrying to pile up money when one can live on so little? What is the use of reading these endless books? Why not let things slide a little, and just take what comes our way? It is only for a little while, and then the great antique mother receives us one more in her bosom. And there are so many people in the world. Think again of all the countless hordes who have and gone, and who will come and go; the immense sea of Time covers them, and what matters the life they led? What odds is that they ever existed at all? Let us do our best to be happy; the earth is good and sweet-smelling, there is sunshine and colour and youth and loveliness, and afterwards, well, let us shrug our shoulders and not think of it."
Far East that were not even in the Complete Works (I don' think)--a nice surprise!). Really takes a nice plunge (again) into the writer's process. That section requires rereading, as it did in The Writer's Notebook. Love WSM.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Maugham never let me down
This is a hardcover, personally I prefer papercover
I loaded this on Kindle and forgot! Sorry. I will be reading it as I travel next week. I really can't say 20 words about it until I finish it but I wanted to retract my previous... Read morePublished on February 9, 2013 by Merry Moon
W. Somerset Maugham
The Skeptical Romancer
Selected Travel Writing
Everyman's Library, Hardback, 2009.
8vo. xli, 196 pp. Read more