Read as BBC Radio 4's Book at Bedtime between December 2008 and January 2009.
Within a dozen pages, Galsworthy establishes his mastery of compelling narrative and sketches an irresistible plot. It is the kind of book one can devour in a single day.
Much of Galsworthy’s achievement lies in the mixture of pathos and humour which he derives from characters little able to express their feelings. It is hard to think of another male British novelist who explores a lover’s heart so painstakingly.
There is much else to admire in The Dark Flower, from Galsworthy’s impressionistic descriptions and eye for detail to the subtle symmetry he creates between his characters, emphasising the cyclical nature of the story. Published in 1913, it also holds the fascination of a world about to be transformed by war: one in which billets doux could still be delivered by the hand of a discreet manservant, and the residents of Piccadilly kept their horses stabled close by so that they could gallop down to Richmond for fresh air.
"The book oozes passion" The Financial Times, 9th August 2008
"It's a great book" - Clive Brill, Radio 4.
- John Galsworthy was born in 1867. An early encounter with Joseph Conrad helped inspire him to write, and he went on to enjoy a successful career as one of the most widely read novelists of his day. Galsworthy was elected first president of the International PEN literary club in 1921. Today he is best remembered for his Forsyte Saga
, for which he won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1932. He died in 1933, aged 65.Please follow this link for more information about the life of John Galsworthy.
John Galsworthy and International P.E.N.Anthony Gardner
- In his role over recent years as Editor of the Royal Society of Literature's
annual Review, Anthony Gardner has built a reputation for fine judgment and
eclectic scholarship in the field of recent English letters.The Royal Society of Literature