Friday, October 24, 2008

Why do they always leave out the best bits?

The new film of Evelyn Waugh's classic leaves Alyson Rudd longing for the subtleties of the original novel

IF YOU READ Evelyn Waugh's 1959 preface to Brideshead Revisited, you might be tempted not to bother with the novel at all. Waugh warns us of glaring defects and ornamental language and more or less apologises for the whole project, offering the circumstances he wrote in - the Second World War - as explanation or, perhaps, excuse. But despite his misgivings, the novel has become famous. It is on that list of books that must be read and probably on that list of books that were more enjoyable than anticipated - and more complex. - Alyson Rudd, Times Online


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