Nostromo

29 12 2008

Nostromo by Joseph Conrad

A huge and rather dark Conrad which sprawls across the imaginary South American country of Costaguana,

The story centres around a silver mine in the mountains outside of the capital, Sulaco, “vividly depicting its allure and the price each character pays for its success”.

The Amazon review continues: “When Charles Gould, returns from England to claim and reopen the rich silver mine he has inherited from his father, he has good intentions–to provide jobs for the peasants and contribute to the economy of the town at the same time that he also profits. Soon, however, he becomes obsessed with wealth and power, and as the political climate gets hotter, he must pay off government officials, bandits, the church, and various armed revolutionaries to be able to work.”

Key to the novel are the actions of Nostromo, a local hero who looks after the mine’s silver by escaping to sea with Decoud, a seedy journo, but then leaves both the silver and his passenger on a nearby island, with dark results.

Revolution and counter revolution, darkness and destruction are present throughout. A really outstanding work.

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