Voyage in the Dark

Voyage in the Dark

Paperback

By (author) Jean Rhys, By (author) Carole Angier

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  • Publisher: PENGUIN CLASSICS
  • Format: Paperback | 176 pages
  • Dimensions: 127mm x 196mm x 13mm | 141g
  • Publication date: 3 August 2000
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0141183950
  • ISBN 13: 9780141183954
  • Sales rank: 29,522

Product description

Brought to life with startling autobiographical detail, Jean Rhys' "Good Morning Midnight" is a poignant portrait of a woman fighting to retain her integrity after being set adrift in a foreign country. This "Penguin Classics" edition includes an introduction by Carole Angier. 'It was as if a curtain had fallen, hiding everything I had ever known,' says Anna Morgan, eighteen years old and catapulted to England from the West Indies after the death of her beloved father. Working as a chorus girl, Anna drifts into the demi-monde of Edwardian London. But there, dismayed by the unfamiliar cold and greyness, she is absolutely alone and unconsciously floating from innocence to harsh experience. Her childish dreams have been replaced by the harsher reality of living in a man's world, where all charity has its price "Voyage in the Dark" was first published in 1934, but it could have been written today. It is the story of an unhappy love affair, a portrait of a hypocritical society, and an exploration of exile and breakdown; all written in Jean Rhys' hauntingly simple and beautiful style. Jean Rhys (1894-1979) was born in Dominica. Coming to England aged 16, she drifted into various jobs before moving to Paris, where she began writing and was 'discovered' by Ford Madox Ford. Her novels, often portraying women as underdogs out to exploit their sexualities, were ahead of their time and only modestly successful. From 1939 (when "Good Morning, Midnight" was written) onwards she lived reclusively, and was largely forgotten when she made a sensational comeback with her account of "Jane Eyre's" Bertha Rochester, "Wide Sargasso Sea", in 1966. If you enjoyed "Voyage in the Dark", you might like James Joyce's "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man", also available in "Penguin Classics". "A wonderful bitter-sweet book, written with disarming simplicity" (Esther Freud, "Express"). "Her eloquence in the language of human sexual transactions is chilling, cynical, and surprisingly moving". (A.L. Kennedy).

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Author information

Jean Rhys was born in Dominica in 1894. Coming to England aged 16, she drifted into various jobs before starting to write in the late 1920's. Her novels, often portraying women as underdogs out to exploit their sexualities, were ahead of their timeand only modestly successful. Partly autobiographical, VOYAGE IN THE DARK was first published in 1934. From 1939 she lived reclusively, and was largely forgotten when she made a sensational comeback with 'Wide Sargasso Sea' in 1966. She died in 1979.

Review quote

Miss Rhys has not often been more steadily successful than in her account of Anna Morgan's quite ordinary tragedy. . . . Miss Rhys has done a nearly perfect job.--T. P., Jr.

Editorial reviews

Watch your market here. It's a book which depends for its values on the effectiveness of the handling of a difficult subject, and the subject will throw it out for your conservative customers. The story of a girl luxuriously brought up in the West Indies, who is cast adrift, with no training for building her own life, in England, and who slips, almost inevitably, into the sordid life of a prostitute. Not quite so clear cut as After Leaving Mr. Mackenzie (her best known book here), but realism well above average. (Kirkus Reviews)

Back cover copy

Rhys's voice is starkly simple, yet sharp as nails. Autobiographically inspired, Rhys created stories of the slightly adrift everywoman looking for an anchor in a cold, hostile landscape.