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Collected Stories (Everyman's Library) (edition 2004)
Collected Stories (Everyman's Library) by W. Somerset Maugham
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In this edition of short fictional works by the prestigious twentieth century author, writer Ashenden turns secret agent in World War I, the chasms of misunderstandings between colonizers and natives comes to a head, and a poetry writing woman clashes with her, the only hardcover edition of short stories by one of the twentieth century's most enduringly popular fiction writers. Though W. Somerset Maugham was also famous for his novels and plays, it has been argued that in the short story he reached the pinnacle of his art was his true m‚etier. These expertly told tales, with their addictive plot twists and vividly drawn characters, are both galvanizing as literature and wonderfully entertaining. In the adventures of his alter ego Ashenden, a writer who, like Maugham himself, turned secret agent in World War I, as well as in stories set in such far flung locales as South Pacific islands and colonial outposts in Southeast Asia, Maugham brings his characters vividly to life, and their humanity is more convincing for the author's merciless exposure of their flaws and failures. Whether the chasms of misunderstanding he plumbs are those between colonizers and natives, between a missionary and a prostitute, or between a poetry writing woman and her uncomprehending husband, Maugham brilliantly displays his irony, his wit, and his genius in the art of storytelling.
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