Cakes and Ale

By W. Somerset Maugham

Cakes and Ale is a scrumptious satire of London literary society among the Wars. Social climber Alroy Kear is flattered while he's chosen via Edward Driffield's spouse to pen the professional biography of her lionized novelist husband, and decided to write down a bestseller. yet then Kear discovers the nice novelist's voluptuous muse (and not likely first wife), Rosie. The full of life, loving heroine as soon as gave Driffield sufficient fabric to final an entire life, yet now her reminiscence casts an embarrissing shadow over his profession and good image.  Wise, witty, deeply pleasurable, Cakes and Ale is Maugham at his top.

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I should get into the second one fifteen. ” She checked out me with kindly shining eyes, smiling together with her complete crimson lips. there has been anything in her smile I had consistently relatively beloved, and her voice appeared virtually to tremble with fun or a tear. For one terrible second i used to be afraid that she was once going to kiss me. i used to be scared out of my wits. She talked on, she was once mildly facetious as grown-up individuals are with schoolboys, and Driffield stood there with no asserting something. He checked out me with a grin in his eyes and pulled his beard. Then the shield blew a cracked whistle and waved a crimson flag. Mrs. Driffield took my hand and shook it. Driffield got here ahead. “Good-bye,” he acknowledged. “Here’s anything for you. ” He pressed a tiny packet into my hand and the teach steamed off. while I opened it i discovered that it was once half-crowns wrapped in a section of loo paper. I blushed to the roots of my hair. i used to be completely satisfied sufficient to have an additional 5 shillings, however the notion that Ted Driffield had dared to provide me a tip stuffed me with rage and humiliation. i couldn't very likely settle for something from him. It used to be real that I had bicycled with him and sailed with him, yet he wasn’t a sahib (I had received that from significant Greencourt) and it used to be an insult to me to provide me 5 shillings. firstly i assumed of returning the cash and not using a be aware, displaying through my silence how outraged i used to be on the solecism he had devoted, then I composed in my head a dignified and frigid letter within which I thanked him for his generosity, yet acknowledged that he needs to see how very unlikely it used to be for a gentleman to simply accept a tip from an individual who was once essentially a stranger. i assumed it over for 2 or 3 days and each day it appeared more challenging to me to half with the 2 half-crowns. I felt certain that Driffield had intended it kindly, and naturally he was once very undesirable shape and didn’t find out about issues; it might be really demanding to harm his emotions through sending the cash again, and eventually I spent it. yet I assuaged my wounded delight via no longer writing to thank Driffield for his reward. while Christmas got here, besides the fact that, and that i went again to Blackstable for the vacations, it was once the Driffields i used to be such a lot desirous to see. In that stagnant little position they on my own appeared to have a reference to the skin global which already used to be commencing to contact my daydreams with nervous interest. yet i couldn't triumph over my shyness sufficient to visit their condo and get in touch with, and that i was hoping that I may still meet them within the city. however the climate used to be dreadful, a boisterous wind whistled down the road, piercing you to the bone, and the few ladies who had an errand have been swept alongside through their complete skirts like fishing boats in part a gale. The chilly rain scudded in surprising squalls and the sky, which in summer time had enclosed the pleasant kingdom so snugly, now was once a good pall that pressed upon the earth with sullen risk. there has been small wish of assembly the Driffields unintentionally and eventually I took my braveness in either palms and sooner or later after tea slipped out. so far as the station the line used to be pitch darkish, yet there the road lamps, few and dim, made it more straightforward to maintain to the pavement.

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