Down and Out in Paris and London

Down and Out in Paris and London

4.1 (45,298 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

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This unusual fictional account, in good part autobiographical, narrates without self-pity and often with humor the adventures of a penniless British writer among the down-and-out of two great cities. In the tales of both cities we learn some sobering Orwellian truths about poverty and society.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 109.22 x 180.34 x 12.7mm | 158.76g
  • San Diego, CA, United States
  • English
  • Illustrations, black and white
  • 015626224X
  • 9780156262248
  • 82,481

Rating details

45,298 ratings
4.1 out of 5 stars
5 35% (15,946)
4 44% (19,753)
3 18% (8,060)
2 3% (1,319)
1 0% (220)

Our customer reviews

"Down and out in Paris and London" isn't exactly "1984" or "Animal Farm" but it's still a really awesome book nevertheless. It gave me a really insightful view at how the world looks like when you are living on the breadline, without a penny to your name. Given the fact that the setting was about the life of poverty in Paris and London (duh!) circa 1920s - 30s, I was half expecting a heart wrenching story about survival (ala Steinbeck's "The Grapes of Wrath"). However, I was pleasantly surprised that it was not the case. Down and out in Paris and London reads like a series of human truths. Some lines from the book to illustrate the point: "It is a feeling of relief, almost of pleasure, at knowing yourself at last genuinely down and out. You have talked so often of going to the dogs - and well, here are the dogs, and you have reached them, and you can stand it. It takes off a lot of anxiety." "It is curious how people take it for granted that they have a right to preach at you and pray over you as soon as your income falls below a certain level." You get my point. I love the book because it doesn't aim to give you a guilt trip for having all the material comforts you always take for granted. You know... the whole clich�?�© of "Count your blessings". I love the book because it explores the power of human dignity... and how it affects the way we look at the world, the way we behave and our role in society. Up to this point, I've made "Down and out in Paris and London" sound really serious. It is a grave injustice on my part. In actual fact, the book is very witty, somewhat sarcastic and really honest (without prejudice). It is really amazing how he can explore so many rich ideas with such ease in his narrative. This is definitely one of the most memorable books that I've read. PS: I just found out that this book is semi autobiographical. Brilliant!show more
by Chia Pi Wo
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