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The Far Country – tekijä: Nevil Shute
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The Far Country (alkuperäinen julkaisuvuosi 1952; vuoden 1967 painos)

– tekijä: Nevil Shute

JäseniäKirja-arvostelujaSuosituimmuussijaKeskimääräinen arvioMaininnat
4951136,338 (3.98)27
A young English woman leaves her ageing parents to visit friends living in the Australian outback. She falls in love, both with the country and with Carl, a doctor and Czech refugee. Brought together through dramatic encounters and strange twists of fate, their relationship hangs in the balance when Jennifer is called back to England.… (lisätietoja)
Jäsen:angielcm
Teoksen nimi:The Far Country
Kirjailijat:Nevil Shute
Info:Pan Books Ltd
Kokoelmat:Oma kirjasto, Fiction
Arvio (tähdet):
Avainsanoja:Fiction

Teoksen tarkat tiedot

Onnen maa Romaani (tekijä: Nevil Shute) (1952)

Viimeisimmät tallentajatLMC73, Fence, mslourens, rendier, DeltaQueen50, dlduncan, Steven1958, jldevine, yksityinen kirjasto, Murtra

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englanti (10)  katalaani (1)  Kaikki kielet (11)
Näyttää 1-5 (yhteensä 11) (seuraava | näytä kaikki)
In Australia Jane and Jack Dorman own a prosperous sheep farm, or station. For the past few years most of the money they earned has gone to pay off loans and debts, but now, for the first time the wool money is all theirs, and its been a good year for selling wool. But Jane is worried about her aunt back in England. Aunt Ethel was the only family member who supported her in her decision to marry an Australian and leave England, they still exchange letters, and in Ethel’s latest she mentioned little things that begin to worry Jane.

Jane is right to worry. The story moves to England and Jennifer, Ethel’s granddaughter, receives a telephone call from her mother asking her to check in on Ethel. When Jennifer does she discovers that Ethel is suffering from starvation and malnutrition. She has been hiding her lack of money from her family and hasn’t asked anyone for help, instead she was selling the furniture and pawning whatever valuables she had.

Back in Australia the Dorman’s decide to send Ethel a cheque, but the money comes too late, Ethel knows she is dying and insists that Jennifer take the money and use it herself to leave England and travel to Australia.

Okay, I’ve already spent longer than I wanted recapping the plot, and I haven’t even gotten to Carl Zlinter yet. But you get how a rough idea of how the story starts out.

And those early chapters set in England are utter misery. Wonderfully written, but just plain miserable. Everyone is still living off ration cards, there is no meat, the damn socialists are in power and no one is happy. And the National Health system, which has just been introduced, is destroying the medical profession. People showing up at the doctors asking questions and getting forms filled out! As though they deserved a responsive doctor.

I’m sure there was plenty of hardship in Britain in the years after WWII, but I think that blaming it on the “socialists” and the nationalisation of the health service is part of Shute’s anti-government spiel. Throughout the novel he seems very much of the opinion that if you work hard you will get rewards, and therefore you’ll deserve them. If you don’t get ahead in life then you haven’t been working hard.

His example of this is Australia, where is you get your head down and do the hard graft you’ll be rich. But even there the government is sticking its nose in, making foreign people do 3 years of college in order have their medical qualifications recognised when anyone can see that they’re good hard working people!

But Australia is there to contrast with the grey, wet, cold, crowded, miserable England that Jennifer leaves. Australia is full of open spaces and opportunity. Its warm and sunny, and there is so much land there for the taking.

Yeah, lets not mention the original inhabitants shall we? Because they don’t get a mention at all in this apart from one comment about “blacks” not being in the frame in a postcard. Well, they don’t get to be in frame in this book either.

So, for me, there are a lot of problems with this novel. It’s almost innocent, in a way, how it seems to believe that hard work is enough. But it is a damaging attitude to have, because it ignore the fact that if you start out life with even a little bit of money then you are way ahead of those in poverty, and for many people no amount of hard work will get them out of poverty.

I’m writing a lot about this because it is a huge part of The Far Country, or at least it seemed to take up a huge amount in my reading of it.

There is also the romance, and the wonderful writing. It’s a very easy read, Shute has a very flowing style that just lets the reader keep on reading, even if they don’t agree with everything he says. I suppose I shouldn’t be too hard on Shute, it was the times he lived and wrote in, but for a modern reader I think there are a lot of issues with the book. It didn’t spoil my enjoyment of the book, or at least, I still enjoyed parts of it, but I don’t think it is one I’d be recommending to a lot of people. ( )
  Fence | Jan 5, 2021 |
Mildly interesting slice-of-life, with romance. There's very little point or crises in it - the inquest ends easily, the mystery of Charlie...isn't much of a mystery, and it's pretty clear what will happen soon with Jennifer at the end. The book ends before things are settled, but after the arc is well established. I was wondering at the beginning if she'd end up with the ranch hand or the DP doctor, but again the pattern was established quickly and the rest was just working it out - it was very obvious that there would be at least one romance coming to fruition. It does make me want to check some histories about England in this period - was the rationing really that bad after the war? Most of the stories I've read talk about meat and butter and so on coming back pretty soon after the war. Enjoyable - not a favorite, but worth reading and rereading. There is some _gorgeous_ description of Australia - landscape, animals, towns, houses and all. It's clearly meant to contrast with the equally well-drawn depiction of (parts of) England as grey, rainy, cold, grim, dirty and shabby. ( )
  jjmcgaffey | Dec 29, 2020 |
BG-1
  Murtra | Nov 10, 2020 |
I'm not sure what I'd call this beyond an historical fiction. A family drama with a romance. Post World War 2 life in Australia and a dissatisfaction with English socialism and rationing that I have encountered in Shute's novels before, but not quite this strongly. The book does go on a bit of a rant against post-war Britain vs the opportunity available in Australia (the 'Far Country'). The author himself had emigrated from England to Australia. Hard working for a new life for those who would try it. The new angle here is that there are a lot of 'New Australians', post War resettlements from across Europe who go there on work programs. Life isn't always easy for them.

A lot of good history in here. I thought this a very good story. It becomes very intense and engrossing. Beyond that, the Australian slang and way of speaking circa 1950 had me chuckling.

This portrait of a prosperous Australia of 1950 is quite a contrast to the drought damaged Australia of 2016 painted in Jane Harper's 'The Dry' that I read a month ago.

As an aside, a small part of the novel is set in Ealing, West London with a lot of attention to detail. Ealing happens to be Nevil Shute's birthplace. For those who care about such things, there is a very strong, well written female lead character. ( )
  RBeffa | Nov 2, 2020 |
I found this to be a reasonable piece of entertainment. Mr. Shute chooses to emphasis the idea that for those living in the straitened post-WWII Great Britain, the commonwealth countries could provide a second chance to enjoy the possibilities of life. There is also an exploration of the difficulties imposed on non-British qualified immigrants to the English speaking world. ( )
  DinadansFriend | Aug 15, 2020 |
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Into my heart an air that kills
From yon far country blows:
What are those blue remembered hills,
What spires, what farms are those?

That is the land of lost content,
I see it shining plain,
The happy highways where I went
And cannot come again.

From the Collected Poems of A. E. Housman, published by Messrs. Jonathan Cape, Ltd., and reproduced by permission of The Society of Authors.
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Tim Archer got into the utility and drove it from the Banbury Feed and General Supply Pty. Ltd., down the main street of the town.
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Englanninkielinen Wikipedia

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A young English woman leaves her ageing parents to visit friends living in the Australian outback. She falls in love, both with the country and with Carl, a doctor and Czech refugee. Brought together through dramatic encounters and strange twists of fate, their relationship hangs in the balance when Jennifer is called back to England.

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