Afternoon Men

Afternoon Men Afternoon Men Follows The Trivial Encounters And Idle Pastimes Of The Social Set Through William Atwater With A Glee In Upending Pretense That Rivals The Works Of Max Beerbohm And Evelyn Waugh, Powell Attacks Artistic Pretension, Aristocratic Jadedness, And The Dark Side Of The Glamorous LifeAfternoon Men Provides An Important Perspective On The Development Of One Of This Century S Great Satirists

Anthony Dymoke Powell CH, CBE was an English novelist best known for his twelve volume work A Dance to the Music of Time, published between 1951 and 1975.Powell s major work has remained in print continuously and has been the subject of TV and radio dramatisations In 2008, The Times newspaper named Powell among their list of The 50 greatest British writers since 1945.

❮Ebook❯ ➥ Afternoon Men  ➦ Author Anthony Powell –
  • Paperback
  • 192 pages
  • Afternoon Men
  • Anthony Powell
  • English
  • 16 June 2019
  • 9781557132840

10 thoughts on “Afternoon Men

  1. says:

    A very funny book in which absolutely nothing happens I read some criticism of it while reading up on literature of the 1930s and thought it sounded unbelievably bleak, but somehow I was amused rather than depressed The characters want very little, do even less, and even the climactic bits are entirely anti climactic very telling in a novel from 1931.

  2. says:

    I first heard about Afternoon Men when I stumbled upon an online review that described the book as the funniest book you will ever read A few of my favorite books we pretty damn funny A Confederacy of Dunces, Catch 22, most Vonnegut books so I figured this book was worth reading I picked up this book not really knowing what to expect other than it should be funny It was an engaging, quick, read despite the fact that nothing really happens for most of the book I finished the book liking it but not really knowing why I didn t find it particularly funny and it certainly wasn t the funniest book I have ever read but there was an element of ridiculousness new word alert to the superficial lives of the characters that is oddly entertaining and keeps you interested I would recommend this book to someone who isn t ready to start in a long, heavy, book War and Peace and wants to read something light The characters lives seem very pointless and I am sure someone with a sharp intellect could find some neat philosophical themebut I just read it for leisure.

  3. says:

    Posh people do nothing very slowly So why do I love this book I really don t know, but it really is a gem Now I want to read everything else he wrote.

  4. says:

    Powell s first novel differs in tone from his Dance cycle The social milieu is much the same intellectuals and artists float about between depressing parties and country houses And the plot is again cyclical while that character was created through metaphor and imagery in Dance, here it is simply the fact that the first and last scenes occur in a private club and conclude with an invitation to a party The mood is much bleaker, however The protagonist seems to have no purpose or real enjoyment to his life, and the only change that occurs to him in the course of the novel is his loss of a couple of girlfriends to other men Despite the fact that I tend to dislike bleak novels, I quite enjoyed reading this It felt much like Naipaul.

  5. says:

    I found this book at a used book store in Minneapolis Anthony Powell is one of my favorite writers, so I bought it I think it was one of his earlier books, published in 1931 Just finished it I liked it, of course The dry wit, the recording of conversations you want to read and and if you do, there s always his massive Dance to the Music of Time The protagonist s love affair reminded me of one I had in college, where you couldn t seem to find a way to where you wanted to go.

  6. says:

    Afternoon Men was Anthony Powell s first novel and was published in 1931 when Powell was only 26 years old I found this copy in a secondhand bookshop when I was reading his twelve volume series of novels, A Dance to the Music of Time It s a fun book and will certainly be of interest to anyone that has read Dance as the style and structure of the book is so similar to his later work The book has little plot and instead concentrates on characters and the dialogue between the many characters, who are all from the same jaded semi aristocratic, intellectual milieu as in Dance The main character is William Atwater who has an unsatisfying job at a museum The book opens with Atwater in a bar discussing with his friend, Pringle, Pringle s current medication regime We are then introduced to several other characters who enter the bar and are known to Atwater As is typical with Powell we get to know the characters from dialogue and short little character descriptions Here, for example, is his description of Atwater early on in the book.He was a weedy looking young man with straw coloured hair and rather long legs, who had failed twice for the Foreign Office He sometimes wore tortoiseshell rimmed spectacles to correct a slight squint, and through influence he had recently got a job in a museum His father was a retired civil servant who lived in Essex, where he and his wife kept a chicken farm.The group from the bar decide to go to a party where we are introduced to even characters Powell does a great job of showing a party in full swing with random conversations with random people, the constant flux of partygoers and the general chaos involved with people getting drunk, some passing out in the bathroom, drinks getting spilt and so on Atwater meets a girl, called Lola She had the look of a gnome or prematurely vicious child whom he unsuccessfully tries to get to go home with him, that is until he is obviously entranced with the appearance of the beautiful Susan Nunnery, then Lola is eager to get Atwater away from the party Although most of the humour is in the dialogue and the character descriptions Powell occasionally gives us a bit of slapstick Mr Scheigan is an American publisher who was with Atwater at the party he was drunk at the bar and then fell asleep on the floor at the party When they decide to leave they try to get Scheigan home in a taxi They all went downstairs and lent a hand in getting Mr Scheigan into his taxi He got out once, but they put him back in again, and as the taxi drove off they saw him leaning through the window talking to the driver The taxi door came open as it turned the corner at the end of the street, but as long as the vehicle remained in sight Mr Scheigan had still not fallen out Barlow said He seemed quite unused to getting into taxis The first section also contains a chapter where we see Atwater at work in the museum He s visited by an annoying member of the public called Dr Crutch who tries to get private access to some of the exhibits, presumably exhibits of a sexual nature There s also an amusing paragraph where Atwater lists all the things he could, and should, do but instead he sat and thought about existence and its difficulties We get to eavesdrop on lunches, parties and chance meetings the characters develop as we find out background information and gossip As Atwater pursues Susan, Lola pursues Atwater Powell describes Atwater s seduction of Lola as mechanical and can only lead to an anti climax but he appears to be making progress with Susan Susan poured herself out some wine She said You re nice You must come and see me some time I live miles away from anywhere with my father You ll like him Tell me about him He s a curious little man with a walrus moustache What does he do He s a failure Where does he fail Oh, he doesn t any longer, she said He s a retired failure, you see You must meet him I d like to Atwater takes Susan to see some boxing but she warns him that she won t fall in love with him, and she doesn t, instead she plans to go away from London for an unspecified period of time.In the final third of the book Atwater visits his friend, Pringle, in the country with some of his other friends Just when we think the novel is not going to go anywhere Powell threatens to give us a bit of drama, only to pull back at the final moment it works really well and is quite amusing And there s some great dialogue, such as this The barman came to the other side of the counter Time please, he said Harriet said You mustn t hurry a lady drinking a pint of beer The effects might be fatal.

  7. says:

    Like other early novels about the Bright Young Things Waugh s Vile Bodies, Green s Party Going, Connolly s The Rock Pool, etc etc Powell s first published book gives rise to a categorical I need to read pretty much everything by this author vibe Perhaps one of the most well wrought, yet largely plotless, debuts this side of The Moviegoer, Speedboat, A Confederacy of Dunces and Sleepless Nights.

  8. says:

    MehUn libro frivolo Non appassionante Non coinvolgente Primo che leggo dell autore, e temo mi abbia un poco fatto passare la voglia di leggere il resto, nonostante tutti dicano sia un grande scrittore.Penso sia l opera a non essere all altezza del resto Quindi si, gli daremo un altra chance Tra un po

  9. says:

    The I re read Powell, the I appreciate the subtlety of the humour A classic from this first of his novels is the comment that a man passed out drunk at a party doesn t lower the tone of the party as much as he did while still conscious It is dry humour at its most Saharan, but very enjoyable.

  10. says:

    Anthony Powell s first novel, published within a year of Evelyn Waugh s Vile Bodies and following much the same cast of Bright Young Things albeit in rather a different manner People fall in and out of love and clubs, venture from Mayfair to the Country, then beat a hasty retreat In his memoirs, Powell makes a distinction between two kinds of novelist the Perfectionists, like Flaubert or Henry James, who write and re write, making sure everything is just so and not a word is misplaced and the Other Sort, like Dickens and Balzac, for whom no situation, detail or character which enters their minds is superfluous He suggests that to be of the Other Sort requires energy and creative vitality, confidence that something good will always turn up if only one plods on This is certainly borne out in one s reading of Dickens and Balzac, in which the polarities of brilliance and dreck sit comfortably side by side, one never guaranteeing the other s absence However, if the writer lacks this self confidence, or innate ability, they must be Perfectionists, compensating perhaps for lack of raw material with scrupulous standards of editing I think it is obvious into which camp Powell would place himself Here we have a very slender plot, rendered with the lightest of touches, every effect understated and deliberate It is dialogue heavy, often with multiple characters maintaining separate threads of conversation, never quite weaving together, producing a musical quality redolent of theatre Descriptions are pared, themselves sometimes reading like stage directions Direct statements of character psychology are rare The elisions serve as punchlines All this makes for rather a self conscious read They style is always apparent, much so than in A Dance to the Music of Time, and the humour is caustic, without the underlying affection present in his opus That is not so surprising Powell was only 26 when this was published Once or twice this tips over into a certain edginess, or callow world weariness which youth is often guilty of Slowly, but very deliberately, the brooding edifice of seduction, creaking and incongruous, came into being, a vast Heath Robinson mechanism, dually controlled by them and lumbering gloomily down vistas of triteness With a sort of heavy fisted dexterity the mutually adapted emotions of each of them became synchronised, until the unavoidable anti climax was at hand Later they dined at a restaurant quite near the flat The last sentence almost saves it, but probably it is always better to avoid writing about sex unless it is humorous I struggle to think of any sex scenes in Dance And I wonder also how much of his understated ness it is attributable to self awareness of artistic limitations not a bad thing the novel s weakest point is towards the end, when the main character is feeling heartbroken and we get the single longest moment of interior reflection , which I thought a bit of a clunker.I compared this to Vile Bodies. Powell is of a realist than Waugh The humour is observational, without much exaggeration of situation or character to create comic effect I wonder whether Waugh s approach works better, there being something about these people which naturally invites caricature, but then, I don t much like that novel either Probably it is difficult to write a good novel about people one dislikes.

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