Coming Up for Air [Audiobook]
05 February 2013, 02:27
Blackstone Audio | 2011 | ISBN: 1455120774 | MP3@80 kbps | 8 hrs 25 mins | 289.1MB
George Bowling, an insurance salesman, hits middle age and feels impelled to ''come up for air'' from his life of quiet desperation. With seventeen pounds he has won at a race, he steals a vacation from his wife and his family and pays a visit to Lower Binfield, the village where he grew up, to fish for carp in a pool he remembers from thirty years before. But the pool is gone, Lower Binfield has changed beyond recognition, and the principal event of Bowling's holiday is an accidental bombing by the R.A.F.
Bowling's everyman life is also a sort of cavalcade of England from 1893 to 1938. Written when the clouds of World War II were already gathering, this story of Bowling's journey into his own and his country's past is told with humor, warmth, and nostalgia which will surprise and delight George Orwell's many readers.
It's a shame that George Orwell's two best-known novels, "Animal Farm" and "Nineteen Eighty Four" are neither one his best novel. The peak of Orwell's fiction is this almost forgotten novel, "Coming Up for Air." Set in the last few years before a World War II that was obviously looming on the horizon, this elegant book memorably chronicles the life of George Bowling and his attempt to escape domesticity and the horrors to come for a few days by visiting his old home town. Every time I reread "Coming Up for Air," I wonder what Orwell might have achieved if he had lived longer and had not been as ill as he was in the ten years that remained to him. If all you've read of Orwell is his two "famous" novels, you owe it to yourself to read this. - By Susan Paxton
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