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Nostromo
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NOSTROMO is the most anxiously meditated of the longer novels which belong to the period following upon the publication of the TYPHOON volume of short stories. I don't mean to say that I became then conscious of any impending change in my mentality and in my attitude towards the tasks of my writing life. And perhaps there was never any change, except in that mysterious, extraneous thing which has nothing to do with the theories of art; a subtle change in the nature of the inspiration; a phenomenon for which I can not in any way be held responsible. What, however, did cause me some concern was that after finishing the last story of the TYPHOON volume it seemed somehow that there was nothing more in the world to write about. This so strangely negative but disturbing mood lasted some little time; and then, as with many of my longer stories, the first hint for NOSTROMO came to me in the shape of a vagrant anecdote completely destitute of valuable details. . . . -- Joseph Conrad
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This involved, philosophical novel is not for the casual listener, especially one who is supposed to be concentrating on the road ahead. Writing in 1904, Conrad invented a complex South American country with a turbulent history and a potentially explosive population, ranging from the wealthy gringo running the Sulaco silver mine to the poorest worker loading cargo on the docks. Although the story teems with lively characters, the dazzling figure of Nostromo eclipses them all. A natural leader‘brave, handsome, and incorruptible‘he naturally becomes the epicenter of the revolution that soon devastates Sulaco. With characteristic eloquence, Conrad has focused on the dramatic action of the revolution to explore challenging themes: capitalism, imperialism, revolution, and social justice. Unfortunately, this audio program, read by Frederick Davidson, is disappointing. Despite fine dramatic characterizations, the narrator's posh British accent is so pronounced that it often detracts from the text. Since Nostromo has also been narrated by Frank Muller (Recorded Books) and Wolfram Kandinsky (Books on TapeR), perhaps this version may not be the best choice.‘Jo Carr, Sarasota, Fla.

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