The Sea, the Sea (Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics)

The Sea, the Sea (Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics)

Iris Murdoch

Language: English

Pages: 528

ISBN: 014118616X

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


Charles Arrowby, leading light of England's theatrical set, retires from glittering London to an isolated home by the sea. He plans to write a memoir about his great love affair with Clement Makin, his mentor, both professionally and personally, and amuse himself with Lizzie, an actress he has strung along for many years. None of his plans work out, and his memoir evolves into a riveting chronicle of the strange events and unexpected visitors-some real, some spectral-that disrupt his world and shake his oversized ego to its very core.

For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

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right.’ ‘Well then, I’ll try, as you say God knows what it means, but I accept, at least I’ll try.’ He held out his hand and I grasped it and for a moment we stood there, moved and embarrassed. Then I heard, from the roadway, the loud urgent hooting of Gilbert’s horn. ‘That’s him!’ I jumped up and began to scramble towards the house. Titus passed me and raced on before me over the grass. When I reached the kitchen door Gilbert was holding on to Titus. ‘He’s here, he came walking along the

to act soon, before Ben should have time to recover. He must be in a state of considerable shock; although unfortunately he would by now know, from the silence of his radio and television sets, that he had failed to kill famous Charles Arrowby. However, and this was now plain, I could not proceed farther than my letter to Hartley while Lizzie and James were in the house. It would be unfair to Lizzie to expect her to witness or even assist the rescue of her rival. And James: well, James made moral

Hartley. She spoke as if this was some sort of definitive description. I went on desperately. I wanted to drag us all down into some common pool of feeling, I wanted to stop this conventional machine of awful insincere politeness. But I could not find suitable words. I said, ‘I feel it was my fault—I can’t—I shall never—’ ‘Of course it wasn’t your fault,’ said Hartley. ‘It certainly wasn’t your fault,’ said Ben judiciously. ‘It’s more likely to have been his fault.’ ‘I can’t bear it, I can’t

where or how my uncle met her. She certainly represented to me some general idea of America: freedom, gaiety, noise. Where Aunt Estelle was there was laughter, jazz music, and (how shocking) alcohol. This again might give the wrong impression. I am speaking of a child’s dream. Aunt Estelle was no ‘drinker’ and her ‘wildness’ was the merest good spirits: health, youth, beauty, money. She had the instinctive generosity of the thoroughly lucky person. She was, in a vague way, demonstratively

dusty feet in sandals. Her lithe movement from crouching to standing, balanced upon the parallel bar in the gym display. The feel of her strong hands through my shirt, holding on to my shoulders. We did not caress each other in an immodest way. Our burning youth was docile to the chivalry of a pure passion. We were prepared to wait. Alas and alas. Never so pure and gentle, never so intense did it come to me after, that absolute and holy yearning of one human body and soul for another. But reading

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