Collected Stories of W. Somerset Maugham

Introduction by Nicholas Shakespeare

Introduction by Nicholas Shakespeare
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Though Somerset Maugham was also famous for his novels, essays, and plays, it has been argued that the short story was his true métier. His 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 and wit, and his genius in the art of storytelling.
W. Somerset Maugham was born in Paris in 1874. He trained as a doctor in London, where he started writing his first novels. In 1926 he bought a house in Cap Ferrat, France, which was to become a meeting place for a number of writers, artists, and politicians. He died in 1965. View titles by W. Somerset Maugham

About

Though Somerset Maugham was also famous for his novels, essays, and plays, it has been argued that the short story was his true métier. His 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 and wit, and his genius in the art of storytelling.

Author

W. Somerset Maugham was born in Paris in 1874. He trained as a doctor in London, where he started writing his first novels. In 1926 he bought a house in Cap Ferrat, France, which was to become a meeting place for a number of writers, artists, and politicians. He died in 1965. View titles by W. Somerset Maugham

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