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Tales of Unrest

Joseph Conrad

Book Overview: 

Tales of Unrest is the first collection of short stories by Joseph Conrad.

Joseph Conrad, a Polish-born English novelist, was a master in the formats of long short story and novella, a form of story longer than conventional short story but shorter than a novel. Some of Conrad's most acclaimed works have been written in these formats, most notably Heart of Darkness

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .And I looked on, surprised and moved; I looked at that man, loyal to a vision, betrayed by his dream, spurned by his illusion, and coming to us unbelievers for help—against a thought. The silence was profound; but it seemed full of noiseless phantoms, of things sorrowful, shadowy, and mute, in whose invisible presence the firm, pulsating beat of the two ship's chronometers ticking off steadily the seconds of Greenwich Time seemed to me a protection and a relief. Karain stared stonily; and looking at his rigid figure, I thought of his wanderings, of that obscure Odyssey of revenge, of all the men that wander amongst illusions faithful, faithless; of the illusions that give joy, that give sorrow, that give pain, that give peace; of the invincible illusions that can make life and death appear serene, inspiring, tormented, or ignoble.

A murmur was heard; that voice from outside seemed to flow out of a dreaming world into the lamp-light of the cabin. Karain wa. . . Read More

Community Reviews

The stories here are from Conrad's early period, in the last decade of 19th century. Given below are my ratings for each of them, along with the setting.

Karain: a memory - 4 (Malaya)
The Idiots - 4.5 (Rural France)
An Outpost of Progress - 5 (Congo)
The Return - 4.5 (London)
The Lagoon - 3 (Malaya)

Of...more

Conrad, Polish born, is recorded as having written his first letter in English aged 28 in 1885. In 1896, aged almost 40, his first novel was published. Of this, his publisher's reader, Edward Garnett, wrote: "When he read aloud to me some new MS pages of 'An Outcast of the Islands' he mispronounc...more

Realmente inquietante. Ler estas pequenas histórias deixou-me com mais vontade de continuar a ler este autor.

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Really unresting. Reading this small tales left in me the urge to read and explore this author.

When Joseph Conrad is mentioned, the idea of him as a chronicler of the evils of imperialism is mixed with the notion of his undeniable bigotry. Rarely has an author so clear-eyed about the evil that men do been so comfortable with the idea of racial hierarchy. But Conrad's theme is the isolation...more

I love Joseph Conrad so much I actually wrote in the margins of this book whenever I came across a passage that blew my mind. And as someone who normally cringes at the thought of defacing a book by writing in margins, it's the highest compliment I can pay.

Early short stories by one of the great stylists of literature. Rediscovering Conrad has been a profound pleasure and these stories make a great reintroduction. Several of them are set in a colonial world where Europeans often behave abominably and are undone by their own natures. One of them is...more

The early work of famous writers can sometimes be an interesting experience as we see them stretch themselves, attempting new subjects and approaches that they had not tried before, and which we will not see them attempt again. Hence the five stories that make up Joseph Conrad’s Tales of Unrest a...more

A hidden gem of Conrad mastery.

This collection of short works represent some of Conrad’s earlier work. First published in 1898, four of the five stories had been previously published. A reader will find many of Conrad’s most frequently explored themes: isolation, distinctions between East and Wes...more

Tales of Unrest is a collection of Joseph Conrad’s first five short stories, including “An Outpost of Progress,” which is closely linked by setting and theme to Heart of Darkness. In fact, all of the stories in this collection share the existential probing that is so compelling in Conrad’s famou...more

Like most everything I've read recently, I'm GOING to review. Just not today.

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