She did not know what to say. She was undecided whether indignantly to assert her innocence or to break out into angry reproaches. He seemed to read her thoughts. 'I've got all the proof necessary.' Kitty Fane is the beautiful but shallow wife of Waiter, a bacteriologist stationed in Hong Kong. Unsatisfied by her marriage, she starts an affair with Charles Townsend, a man whom she finds charming, attractive and exciting. But when Waiter discovers her deception, he exacts a strange but terrible vengeance: Kitty must accompany him to his new posting in remote mainland China, where a cholera epidemic rages. First published to a storm of protest, The Painted Veil is a classic story of a woman's spiritual awakening.
William Somerset Maugham was born in 1874 and lived in Paris until he was ten. He was educated at King's School, Canterbury, and at Heidelberg University. He spent some time at St. Thomas' Hospital with the idea of practising medicine, but the success of his first novel, Liza of Lambeth, published in 1897, won him over to literature. Of Human Bondage, the first of his masterpieces, came out in 1915, and with the publication in 1919 of The Moon and Sixpence his reputation as a novelist was established. At the same time his fame as a successful playwright and writer was being consolidated with acclaimed productions of various plays and the publication of several short story collections. His other works include travel books, essays, criticism and the autobiographical The Summing Up and A Writer's Notebook. In 1927 Somerset Maugham settled in the South of France and lived there until his death in 1965
"Reveals many of Maugham's strengths: an understanding of women, meticulous craftsmanship and raw emotion'" Daily Mail "A work of art" Spectator "An expert craftsman... His style is sharp, quick, subdued, casual" New York Times
Stunningly rejacketed as part of a major reinvention of this neglected 20th century master
W. Somerset Maugham
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