The Comedians

The Comedians

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by Graham Greene
     
 

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Three men meet on a ship bound for Haiti, a world in the grip of the corrupt "Papa Doc" and the Tontons Macoute, his sinister secret police. Brown the hotelier, Smith the innocent American, and Jones the confidence man - these are the "comedians" of the title. Hiding behind their actors' masks, they hesitate on the edge of life. And, to begin with, they are men afraid…  See more details below

Overview

Three men meet on a ship bound for Haiti, a world in the grip of the corrupt "Papa Doc" and the Tontons Macoute, his sinister secret police. Brown the hotelier, Smith the innocent American, and Jones the confidence man - these are the "comedians" of the title. Hiding behind their actors' masks, they hesitate on the edge of life. And, to begin with, they are men afraid of love, afraid of pain, afraid of fear itself.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Greene's 1967 novel features three characters-a hotelier, an American idealist, and a confidence man-en route to the corrupt Haiti of Papa Doc. Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
From the Publisher
"Graham Greene arouses responses of curiosity and attention comparable to those set up by Malraux... Faulkner and Hemingway."
New Statesman

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780140184945
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
11/05/1991
Series:
Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics Series
Edition description:
REISSUE
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
5.16(w) x 7.72(h) x 0.82(d)

Meet the Author

Graham Greene (1904-1991), whose long life nearly spanned the length of the twentieth century, was one of its greatest novelists. Educated at Berkhamsted School and Balliol College, Oxford, he started his career as a sub-editor of The Times of London. He began to attract notice as a novelist with his fourth book, Orient Express, in 1932. In 1935, he trekked across northern Liberia, his first experience in Africa, recounted in A Journey Without Maps (1936). He converted to Catholicism in 1926, an edifying decision, and reported on religious persecution in Mexico in 1938 in The Lawless Roads, which served as a background for his famous The Power and the Glory, one of several “Catholic” novels (Brighton Rock, The Heart of the Matter, The End of the Affair). During the war he worked for the British secret service in Sierra Leone; afterward, he began wide-ranging travels as a journalist, which were reflected in novels such as The Quiet American, Our Man in Havana, The Comedians, Travels with My Aunt, The Honorary Consul, The Human Factor, Monsignor Quixote, and The Captain and the Enemy. In addition to his many novels, Graham Greene wrote several collections of short stories, four travel books, six plays, two books of autobiography—A Sort of Life and Ways of Escape—two biographies, and four books for children. He also contributed hundreds of essays and film and book reviews to The Spectator and other journals, many of which appear in the late collection Reflections. Most of his novels have been filmed, including The Third Man, which the author first wrote as a film treatment. Graham Greene was named Companion of Honour and received the Order of Merit among numerous other awards.

Paul Theroux, an internationally acclaimed travel writer, is also the author of over two dozen novels and works of non-fiction. He divides his time between Cape Cod and the Hawaiian Islands.

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Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
October 2, 1904
Date of Death:
April 3, 1991
Place of Birth:
Berkhamsted, England
Place of Death:
Vevey, Switzerland
Education:
Balliol College, Oxford

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Comedians 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Atthebeach More than 1 year ago
I like Graham Greene, but don't love him. His characters seem more interesting than his plots, and so they don't always develop as fully as I hope. And parts of his books seem slow. But I am always glad I read a book by Greene in the end. I know I learned something and I always feel the stories are so real that he must have witnessed them. I bought "The Comedians" because I am very curious about Haiti and how it went from the country it once was (in my lifetime), to the one it is today. This story revolves around Haiti during the regime of Papa Doc through the experiences of expats in a country they had once enjoyed and now found horribly changed. And the plot takes the main character through a dangerously, yet thrilling, attempt to play a hand in Haiti's future. As usual, none of Greene's characters are pure or fully heroic; they all have their flaws and limitations. But as I came to know them I found I liked them anyway and, though I know how Haiti turned out, rooted for them to do some good. By the last third of the book, I could not put it down, and the last few chapters were far more surprising and exciting, even hopeful, than I could have imagined. But the sheer helplessness I felt at the end of this book, written decades ago, foretold the Haiti we see today.....as if he knew.
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