The Secret Agent: A Simple Tale [NOOK Book]

Overview

The Secret Agent: A Simple Tale is a novel by Joseph Conrad published in 1907. The story is set in London in 1886 and deals largely with the life of Mr. Verloc and his job as a spy. The Secret Agent is also notable as it is one of Conrad's later political novels, which move away from his typical tales of seafaring. The novel deals broadly with the notions of anarchism, espionage, and terrorism. It portrays anarchist or revolutionary groups before many of the social uprisings of the twentieth century. However, it ...
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The Secret Agent: A Simple Tale

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Overview

The Secret Agent: A Simple Tale is a novel by Joseph Conrad published in 1907. The story is set in London in 1886 and deals largely with the life of Mr. Verloc and his job as a spy. The Secret Agent is also notable as it is one of Conrad's later political novels, which move away from his typical tales of seafaring. The novel deals broadly with the notions of anarchism, espionage, and terrorism. It portrays anarchist or revolutionary groups before many of the social uprisings of the twentieth century. However, it also deals with exploitation, particularly with regard to Verloc's relationship with his brother-in-law Stevie.

Because of its terrorist theme, The Secret Agent was noted as "one of the three works of literature most cited in the American media" around two weeks after 11 September 2001. The Secret Agent was ranked the 46th best novel of the 20th century by Modern Library.

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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940148195863
  • Publisher: Bronson Tweed Publishing
  • Publication date: 2/25/2014
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 1,297,803
  • File size: 262 KB

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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(2)

4 Star

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3 Star

(1)

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 11, 2013

    This is a superb seminal work well deserving of its iconic statu

    This is a superb seminal work well deserving of its iconic status.  The characters are so deeply cast that the writer draws you in and you actually feel their emotions.  The scenery of London in the era is exquisitely detailed  that the picture forms in your mind like from an artist's brush stroke with every sentence.  The socio political environment of the era is explored and explained in amazing detail from various viewpoints - that of the socialist-labour movement, that of the anarchists, that of the foreign (Russian and French) revolutionaries and diplomats trying to unsettle and overthrow the capitalist fabric; and then its impact on the ordinary citizens.

    The beginning of the story is bright and cheerful - sometimes portrayed with a kind of Dickensian humour - with The Secret Agent, an anarchist, living a contented and delicately balanced life in his shop in Soho in London with his wife, mother-in-law, and half witted brother-in-law. The tensions in the household is subtly introduced with the wife trying her best to weave the brother she loves deeply and the other into the affections of her husband on whom they are all dependent.  Then a call to a meeting by the russian born Controller of the Secret Agent acts as a catalyst that unsettles the fragile peace.  From then on a series of panicked and desperate actions exposing the dark side of the characters, the fabric of the family falls apart with each chapter until the tragic end.

    The ending is definitely unsatisfactory.  I innocent are wronged and driven to death and the opportunistic prosper from it.  I cannot help but wish for a happier ending, though I realize that this may have well been the way things might have gone had the characters lived in the era in real life.

    The third person omniscient POV is a little weird, but that was the norm of good writing in the era.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 30, 2014

    Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....!

    Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....!

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  • Posted June 29, 2014

    Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....!

    Lovely...! beautiful.....!.... Just enjoy it.....!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 12, 2012

    Not the best Conrad novel

    A slow story with an abrupt morality-tale ending. Not worth rereading.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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