“We look like a bunch of pilgrims gathering to start a pilgrimage to Canterbury.” “You may be right about being pilgrims, but you can’t compare this sweltering place to a fourteenth century English tavern.” We all laughed. In a way the young man was right: four unconnected people had flocked together. First we were sitting […]
The Light and the Dark focuses on Roy Calvert, a young, brilliant, wealthy and attractive scholar of Oriental languages whose recurrent bouts of melancholy eventually lead him to court death as a World War Two bomber pilot. Originally published second in the “Strangers and Brothers” series, it was placed fourth when Snow rearranged the sequence for the 1972 omnibus edition. Lewis Eliot is the first-person narrator, as in all the “Strangers and Brothers” novels; but Calvert is the main protagonist.
This is the first part of the omnibus edition of the Strangers and Brothers sequence. C.P. Snow revised all the novels for this edition. The novels appear in chronological order. This volumes contains an introduction by C.P. Snow and a complete and impressive list of characters for the eleven novels. This volume contains:
— Time of Hope
— George Passant
— The Conscience of the Rich
— The Light and the Dark
Nicolas Tredell: The Search, C.P. Snow’s third published novel, traces the awakening, pursuit and eventual loss of a sense of scientific vocation. It followed two excursions into genre fiction, and is the kind of realistic novel with which Snow would become primarily associated: it explores the friendships, rivalries and enmities between men in a highly competitive and demanding professional world and also examines, to a lesser but significant extent, their erotic and emotional relationships with women. The Search dramatizes and analyzes the complex dynamics of hope, ambition, idealism, disappointment and failure in ways which anticipate Snow’s eleven-volume “Strangers and Brothers” series, but it is more than a trial run for the latter: it stands as a substantial novel in its own right and addresses some science-related issues more fully than any of his later fiction.
Every so often I reread one of CP Snow’s novels. I don’t know why exactly. Perhaps because in the first place he is such a keen observer of how people live together: the political — in the widest possible sense — struggle to prevail. The way societies organise themselves, the way they meet new problems […]