Dance to the Music of Time: Second Movement

Overview


Anthony Powell's universally acclaimed epic encompasses a four-volume panorama of twentieth century London. Hailed by Time as "brilliant literary comedy as well as a brilliant sketch of the times," A Dance to the Music of Time opens just after World War I. Amid the fever of the 1920s and the first chill of the 1930s, Nick Jenkins and his friends confront sex, society, business, and art. In the second volume they move to London in a whirl of marriage and adulteries, fashions and frivolities, personal triumphs and...
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Overview


Anthony Powell's universally acclaimed epic encompasses a four-volume panorama of twentieth century London. Hailed by Time as "brilliant literary comedy as well as a brilliant sketch of the times," A Dance to the Music of Time opens just after World War I. Amid the fever of the 1920s and the first chill of the 1930s, Nick Jenkins and his friends confront sex, society, business, and art. In the second volume they move to London in a whirl of marriage and adulteries, fashions and frivolities, personal triumphs and failures. These books "provide an unsurpassed picture, at once gay and melancholy, of social and artistic life in Britain between the wars" (Arthur Schlesinger, Jr.). The third volume follows Nick into army life and evokes London during the blitz. In the climactic final volume, England has won the war and must now count the losses.

In the background of this second volume of A Dance to the Music of Time, the rumble of distant events in Germany and Spain presages the storm of World War II. In England, even as the whirl of marriages and adulteries, fashions and frivolities, personal triumphs and failures gathers speed, men and women find themselves on the brink of fateful choices.

Includes these novels:
At Lady Molly's
Casanova's Chinese Restaurant
The Kindly Ones

"Anthony Powell is the best living English novelist by far. His admirers are addicts, let us face it, held in thrall by a magician."—Chicago Tribune

"A book which creates a world and explores it in depth, which ponders changing relationships and values, which creates brilliantly living and diverse characters and then watches them grow and change in their milieu. . . . Powell's world is as large and as complex as Proust's."—Elizabeth Janeway, New York Times

"One of the most important works of fiction since the Second World War. . . . The novel looked, as it began, something like a comedy of manners; then, for a while, like a tragedy of manners; now like a vastly entertaining, deeply melancholy, yet somehow courageous statement about human experience."—Naomi Bliven, New Yorker

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Powell's epic of 20th-century England is actually composed of 12 novels divided into four "movements," although they can be read individually as separate works. The novels were originally published from the 1950s through the 1970s.
C. David Benson
The most sophisticated chronicle of modern life we have. -- New Republic
Elizabeth Janeway
A book which creates a world and explores it in depth, which ponders challenging relationships and values, which creates brilliantly living and diverse characters and then watches them grow and change in their milieu. . . .Powell's world is as large and complex as Proust's. -- The New York Times
Arthur Schlesinger
"A series of intertwining stories, in mood at once hilarious, raffish and melancholy....The reader who likes to watch history unfold as social comedy while he savors the astringent of the best English prose is urged to immerse himself in the works and this astute and enchanting writing."
--Life Magazine
Bernard Bergonzi
"A comic masterpiece, and a major achievement in post-war English fiction."
--The Guardian
Elizabeth Janeway
"A book which creates a world and explores it in depth, which creates brilliantly living and diverse characters and then watches them grow and change.....Powel's world is as large and complex as Proust's."
--New York Times
Naomi Bliven
"One of the most important works of fiction since the second world war....a vastly entertaining, deeply melancholy, yet somehow courageous statement about human experience."
--The New Yorker
Christopher Porterfield
"The way in which Powell invests the whole of the book with parallels, variations and ironic reversals of this legend is wonderously rich and subtle."
--Time
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780226677163
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press
  • Publication date: 6/28/1995
  • Series: Dance to the Music of Time Series
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 724
  • Sales rank: 230,029
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 1.70 (d)

Meet the Author


Anthony Powell's work includes Miscellaneous Verdicts and Under Review, both available from the University of Chicago Press.
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