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Nostromo (1904)

by Joseph Conrad

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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3,969532,162 (3.8)204
Nostromo is a classic anti-hero, who lives in a fictitious mining village on the coast of a fictitious South American country. Many regard the imagined setting of the novel to be some of Conrad's finest work. The characters in the novel are also more highly-developed than those of his other novels, and were inspired by a group of mental patients Conrad had met shortly before beginning the novel.… (more)
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» See also 204 mentions

English (43)  French (2)  Dutch (2)  Swedish (1)  Spanish (1)  Portuguese (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (51)
Showing 1-5 of 43 (next | show all)
Is this a "Classic"? It sure is good even though it is so old and outdated as to be almost irrelevant in this day and age. Would make a good soap or Netflix series. I thought it had something to do with the Alien franchise because of the occurrence of Conrad stuff in that series of movies. Nostromo was the name of the ship in the first Alien movie and the name of this mythical country is the name of the ship in the second movie.

Alas, all that ends there. This is a period piece set a long time ago in South America(ish) As a story it is engaging and all there. but I couldn't really see what it was about at all or even why I was reading it after the first 50 pages. But there I was and read it all the way through.

I do find it hard to engage with stories set so far in the past that there is almost nothing to grip on. ( )
  Ken-Me-Old-Mate | Sep 24, 2020 |
One of the twentieth century's great novels.
  GeorgeHandel | Aug 28, 2020 |
Like 'Heart of Darkness' I think it's a book that I'm more pleased to have read than I was to be *reading*, if that makes any sense at all. I like Conrad's writing style, but I thought the structure of 'Nostromo' didn't do it any favours. The entire first part seemed unnecessary to me, and it makes the book extremely hard to get into. If you manage to persevere until the second and final parts, however, there's a good story amidst the descriptive passages. I didn't find many of the characters at all sympathetic, which made me a little sad because there was Good Angst to be had if I had cared more about whether the main characters lived, died, floundered or prospered. ( )
  Tara_Calaby | Jun 22, 2020 |
While he is introduced to Conrad's novel only incidentally and fragmentarily, Nostromo gradually rises to dominate this story of a South American country tormented by constant revolutions. Nostromo himself is something of a liminal character, caught betwixt and between. Indebted to the aristocratic Blancos, his submerged resentments put him on the side of the people he defends the Blancos from. At least theoretically. For Nostromo acknowledges the oppression of his fellow cargo handlers and the peasantry and Indians that work the mine that forms the focal point of the story, the item and its treasure over which the Blancos and revolutionaries battle. No matter, because for whomever falls under the mine's temptations becomes hardened, cold, and willing to separate himself from his ethics and honor. So it is with Nostromo, who for just a portion of the mine becomes corrupted until the very end of things.

It is a marvelous story. And Conrad is on to using the full force of literary manipulation at his call. In this case, that means his subtle shifts in time and perspective as well as sliding almost seamlessly between the stories of several different characters. And he has moments of shock as well. Like a Hitchcock movie, Psycho, Conrad is not averse to doing away with a central character some three quarters way through the book with whom the reader has begun to identify as someone redeemed from frivolous aspirations, made honorable, and prepared to sacrifice love for duty.

Too, the level of psychological study is nothing short of astounding. Not just Nostromo comes under observation, but the motivations and fears of at least a dozen other characters also undergoes thorough examination. The conflicts within that make humanity such an unpredictable and sometimes terror filled or horror laden entity rounds out the landscape of Conrad's canvas ( )
1 vote PaulCornelius | Apr 12, 2020 |
A very good novel involving a South American revolution and more than one heroic act by the named character. It proves that a classic novel may be fast-paced, and moving. the prose is of a very high standard, and the characters well drawn. I've always thought this 1904 novel was Conrad's best work. By the way I read an earlier Penguin reprint, run off in 1963, with no editorial apparatus. ( )
  DinadansFriend | Jan 19, 2020 |
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» Add other authors (51 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Conrad, Josephprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hogarth, PaulIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Järvenpää, HeidiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lavery, JohnCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Matthis, MoaPrefacesecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Petersen, HenrikTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Söderberg, StenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Seymour-Smith, MartinIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Warren, Robert PennIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"So foul a sky clears not without a storm"

- Shakespeare, [King John, iv. ii. 109]
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To John Galsworthy
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In the time of Spanish rule, and for many years afterwards, the town of Sulaco—the luxuriant beauty of the orange gardens bears witness to its antiquity—had never been commercially anything more important than a coasting port with a fairly large local trade in ox-hides and indigo.
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Nostromo is a classic anti-hero, who lives in a fictitious mining village on the coast of a fictitious South American country. Many regard the imagined setting of the novel to be some of Conrad's finest work. The characters in the novel are also more highly-developed than those of his other novels, and were inspired by a group of mental patients Conrad had met shortly before beginning the novel.

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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141441631, 0141389443

Recorded Books

An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

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Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

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