Clock without Hands

Clock without Hands

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In this thoughtful and moving novel, four men find themselves inextricably bound together by their past histories. The aged Judge Clane dreams of resurrecting the confederacy, while his grandson, Jester, is involuntarily drawn to Sherman, a volatile black orphan who feels the sharp sting of racial injustice, especially when he finds out the truth about his parentage. Through the eyes of these individuals Carson McCullers explores the roots of racial prejudice and the dual moralities of the town's leading more

Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 129 x 198 x 13mm | 168g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New edition.
  • 0140083588
  • 9780140083583
  • 102,804

About Carson McCullers

Carson McCullers was born in 1917. She is the critically acclaimed author of several popular novels in the 1940s and '50s, including The Member of the Wedding (1946). Her novels frequently depicted life in small towns of the southeastern United States and were marked by themes of loneliness and spiritual isolation. McCullers suffered from ill health most of her adult life, including a series of strokes that began when she was in her 20s; she died at the age of 50. The Member of the Wedding was dramatized for the stage in the 1950s and filmed in 1952 and 1997. Other films based on her books are Reflections in a Golden Eye (1967, with Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando), The Heart is a Lonely Hunter (1968, starring Alan Arkin) and The Ballad of the Sad Cafe (1991).show more

Review Text

This newest addition to the slender output of one of the few first-rate novelists of our time embellishes an already fine literary reputation though it lacks the sting of her previous work. Clock Without Hands is written in the author's usual fashion - with great narrative skill and precise characterization, employing a hero who serves both as witness and participant to the main events of the plot. In this case, J. T. Malone, a dogged and ordinary pharmacist, learns that he is dying of leukemia. His internal struggle towards salvation is counterpointed against that of the town's leading family, whose sole survivors are a Judge and his grandson. The destiny of all three is linked with Sherman Pew, a Negro adolescent with blue eyes, orphaned at birth, who is the embodiment of their guilt. The Judge must cope with the mystery of his son's suicide years before; the grandson searches for his identity in his father's death; the Negro pursues his own reality in the form of his undisclosed parentage. Malone, alone, must justify all of life. The lines weave, then merge, into one moment when each must respond to the Negro's move-into a white neighborhood, involving them in the moral responsibility for his life or death when a citizen's committee acts to bomb him. The author has resolved her plot in a more affirmative tone than in her previous stories. Malone, dying, personifies the common bond in mankind that would erase the aloneness. He finds the unifying force- man suffering, no longer the great equalizer in the face of death. Alone, he relates to both life and death. (Kirkus Reviews)show more