ISBN10: 1491094133 ISBN13: 9781491094136 Publisher: Createspace Indie Pub Platform Published: Jul 26 2013 Pages: 426 Weight: 2.08lbs. Height: 9.69" Width: 7.44" Depth: 0.96" Language: English
Honor, like virtue or reputation, is more easily lost than regained. Such is the premise of Lord Jim. Conrad himself half-admits in his cover note that this is probably his best novel. For more than an absorbing tale of guilt, love, and adventure, it is also a book that asks big and incisive questions. What is honor? Is there such a thing in life as principle? Or rather can one live without principles and, if not, then what if one has to die for them? Jim is young and idealistic, a talented and unafraid sailor, but he has made an early mistake, a lapse that caused him to abandon ship at the wrong time. Relegated to the fringe of the mariners' community, he drifts into in a lost corner of the Indonesian islands. It is there that he becomes Lord Jim, a pacifier, an arbiter among the local folk, a living legend. The lost province of Patusan, besides, is where he finds romance in the person of the smart, attractive, and spirited half-caste Jewel. Yet as strife re-emerges in the shape of a pirate raid on the town, Jim is soon torn between the defense of his patiently rebuilt self-regard and his love and life's salvation. Lord Jim is told in two parts, both drawing minutely and to striking effect from Conrad's personal experience of the sea and the tropics. First comes the strange and paradoxical shipwreck of the Patna, a transport for Meccan pilgrims on which Jim acts as skipper. Then the book follows Jim in his subsequent drift and his reinvention in Patusan. The story is told by sea captain Charles Marlow, the same narrator Conrad has in Heart of Darkness, here however developed as a character at greater length and to greater effect. Finally, for those worried about political correctness, this is no tale of the white man come to rule over the brown, and Conrad's humanistic credentials only come out reinforced. Lord Jim is required reading for fans of Conrad and, capturing the values of a disappearing world like no other, one of the great novels of the turn of the twentieth century.