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The Dark Philosophers (Library of Wales) by…
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The Dark Philosophers (Library of Wales) (original 1946; edition 2006)

by Gwyn Thomas

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431502,762 (3.71)11
Incest, murder, delusion and a devastating, tragic humor mark these three novellas that Gwyn Thomas wrote in 1946: The Dark Philosophers, Oscar, and Simeon. In this book the grimly humorous philosophers gather in an Italian café in the terraces to tell the tragic tale of comeuppance and manslaughter that they engineer.… (more)
Member:Americymru
Title:The Dark Philosophers (Library of Wales)
Authors:Gwyn Thomas
Info:Parthian Books (2006), Paperback, 308 pages
Collections:Your library
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The Dark Philosophers by Gwyn Thomas (1946)

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Newly republished by the Library of Wales this is a dark, grim and sometimes humorous collection 3 novellas by Gwyn Thomas an author and playwright who was described as 'the true voice of the English-speaking valleys'. Born in 1913 the youngest son of a coalminer and struggling to find work during the 30s depression he is writing here, what he knows. This will do nothing to shift old welsh stereotypes of poverty stricken, downtrodden miners and huge numbers of unemployed living in tiny, cold damp houses amidst the much rained upon slag heaps but that doesn’t lessen its interest or value.

The longest story (The Dark Philosophers itself) is by far the best. The initial description of bunch of guys sitting around an Italian cafe discussing politics may not sell it. It is really a delicious tale of religion, politics, love and revenge with a very amusing, sarcastic narrator and populated with some real and interesting characters. A story to chew and relish in the up and coming ending. Thomas really shines here and it’s worth seeking the book out for this story alone.

The other two tales are shorter and less memorable. Oscar I read long ago and barely remember apart from the unremitting bleakness and downbeat ending, the flashes of humour passing me by as my modern sensibilities were overwhelmed. The last is the most shocking but suffers from the plot being obvious to a modern reader, still it’s an err.. entertaining tale of incest and murder in the valleys, rich in description and characters. ( )
1 vote clfisha | Apr 27, 2012 |
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"Rainwater streamed down walls of the harp." - Oscar
"If, instead of taking the left-hand road that led you up to the Terraces, you took the right-hand road, two things would happen" - The Dark Philosophers
"We all looked at Simeon with respect" - Simeon
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Incest, murder, delusion and a devastating, tragic humor mark these three novellas that Gwyn Thomas wrote in 1946: The Dark Philosophers, Oscar, and Simeon. In this book the grimly humorous philosophers gather in an Italian café in the terraces to tell the tragic tale of comeuppance and manslaughter that they engineer.

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Incest, murder, delusion and a devastating, tragic humour mark these three novellas that Gwyn Thomas wrote in 1946. They are 'Oscar', 'Simeon', and 'The Dark Philosophers'. In this book the grimly humorous philosophers gather in an Italian cafe. [ http://www.parthianbooks.com/content/... ]
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