Liza of Lambeth

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Overview

Maugham's first published novel - a vividly realistic portrayal of slum life. Down among the drab slums of Lambeth, eighteen-year-old Liza is the darling of Vere Street. Vibrant and bewitching, she has found an adoring if conventional beau in Tom. When she meets Jim Blakeston, a married man new to the area, she is immediately magnetized by his attentions. But the streets are wise to their illicit, passionate affair and before long the secret is out.

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Overview

Maugham's first published novel - a vividly realistic portrayal of slum life. Down among the drab slums of Lambeth, eighteen-year-old Liza is the darling of Vere Street. Vibrant and bewitching, she has found an adoring if conventional beau in Tom. When she meets Jim Blakeston, a married man new to the area, she is immediately magnetized by his attentions. But the streets are wise to their illicit, passionate affair and before long the secret is out.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The modern writer who has influenced me the most." - George Orwell

"One of my favourite writers." - Gabriel Garcia Marquez

"A writer of great dedication." - Graham Greene

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780099282747
  • Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 7/25/2000
  • Pages: 704
  • Product dimensions: 5.12 (w) x 7.81 (h) x 0.31 (d)

Meet the Author

W. Somerset Maugham was born in 1874 and lived in Paris until he was ten. He was educated at King's School, Canterbury, and at Heidelberg University. He afterwards walked the wards of St. Thomas's Hospital with a view to practice in medicine, but the success of his first novel, Liza of Lambeth (1897), won him over to letters. Something of his hospital experience is reflected, however, in the first of his masterpieces, Of Human Bondage (1915), and with The Moon and Sixpence (1919) his reputation as a novelist was assured.

His position as one of the most successful playwrights on the London stage was being consolidated simultaneously. His first play, A Man of Honour (1903), was followed by a procession of successes just before and after the First World War. (At one point only Bernard Shaw had more plays running at the same time in London.) His theatre career ended with Sheppey (1933).

His fame as a short-story writer began with The Trembling of a Leaf, sub-titled Little Stories of the South Sea Islands, in 1921, after which he published more than ten collections.

W. Somerset Maugham's general books are fewer in number. They include travel books, such as On a Chinese Screen (1922) and Don Fernando (1935), essays, criticism, and the self-revealing The Summing Up (1938) and A Writer's Notebook (1949).

W. Somerset Maugham became a Companion of Honour in 1954. He died in 1965.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 28, 2002

    Beautiful picture of lower-class subarban London

    The story plot is nothing extraordinary, nor are the characaters unique, but what sets this short novel apart from the rest is the vivid picture that Maugham creates of the lower section of the London society. The story flows freely with a lucid style of writing, arresting the reader's attention from the first pages to the last, and touches a chord in the reader's heart somewhere deep, all along the way. Definitely a work of class, more so, it was Maugham's first novel. The old adage 'morning shows the day' aptly describes what the writer achieves in this work and the masterpieces that follow (Of Human Bondage, The Moon and the Sixpence, The Razor's Edge, etc.).

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