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Phineas Redux

Anthony Trollope

Book Overview: 

Phineas Redux is the fourth in Trollope’s series of six Palliser novels. At the end of Phineas Finn, the second novel in the series, Phineas had returned to Ireland and married his childhood sweetheart after having left the House of Commons. As Phineas Redux opens, Phineas is working as a Poorhouse Inspector in Ireland. His wife having died in childbirth, he finds his existence dull and unsatisfying. Phineas’ returns to England; his career advances and his romantic adventures continue, while we encounter many familiar characters including Glencora and Plantagenet Palliser, Madame Goesler, and Lizzie Eustace and her husband the Reverand Mr. Aemelius.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .do could do nothing with the fox she had found unless he was there to help her.

Spooner was quite right, as he generally was on such occasions. He knew the hounds even by voice, and knew what hound he could believe. Most hounds will lie occasionally, but Dido never lied. And there were many besides Spooner who believed in Dido. The whole pack rushed to her music, though the body of them would have remained utterly unmoved at the voice of any less reverenced and less trustworthy colleague. The whole wood was at once in commotion,—men and women riding hither and thither, not in accordance with any judgment; but as they saw or thought they saw others riding who were supposed to have judgment. To get away well is so very much! And to get away well is often so very difficult! There are so many things of which the horseman is bound to think in that moment. Which way does the wind blow? And then, though a fox will not long run up wind, he will break covert up win. . . Read More

Community Reviews

After reading, and loving, Can You Forgive Her? (1865) (Palliser #1) in July 2023, I started working my way through the Palliser series.

After the slight detour of The Eustace Diamonds (1873), we are back with Phineas Finn who we first met in the the second book, Phineas Finn (1869).

Phineas Redux (

You shouldn't read Trollope for suspense. But with the other books I enjoyed being as concerned as the characters about the silly bullshit of their privileged lives. Will Phineas be made an Under-Secretary of State at the Colonial Office? Will Madame Max marry the Duke of Palliser? Who is Lizzie Eus

An enjoyable read, though not my favourite Palliser. Funny and compelling, especially in the middle section, with usual wonderful Trollope writing and insight - though the ending was perhaps not precisely what I wanted!

A guest on some podcast I was half-listening to the other day brought me up short with this arresting prophecy: “I feel like 2016 is that moment just before an earthquake when dogs are barking like crazy, rats are fleeing the cities and gerbils are eating their young.” I may be paraphrasing slightly

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