Of Human Bondage, by W Somerset Maugham

"Autobiographical Novel", telling the story of Philip Carey, from his childhood, when he loses his parents and has to go and live with his uncle and aunt, through his attempts to become an artist by studying in Paris, and then training first to be an accountant and then a doctor.

I read this some time ago and what I had remembered was how easy it was to read. It certainly does slip down very pleasantly, although I don't think I was as impressed this time as before. I'd also remembered the book as being largely set in France where Philip was trying to learn how to paint, but in fact that period only accounts for about a fifth of the story.

The thing I'd forgotten was the business of the dreadful Mildred - the girl who Philip fell hopelessly in love with despite her treating him so badly. Philip's own inability to explain how he could be so besotted with her made the whole thing seem more, not less, real.

Glad I read it again, but not sure it would be worth a third go.

Completed : 15-Apr-2007

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