When the Melmottes arrive in London everyone agrees their manners are wanting, their taste is excerable and their lineage and background decidedly shadowy. Soon hearts, minds and family savings are swept into the whirl of Augustus Melmotte's lavish parties and exciting investment plans - but is it all an elaborate swindle?
When the Melmottes arrive in London everyone agrees their manners are wanting, their taste is excerable and their lineage and background decidedly shadowy. But their money is far from revolting, and city society quickly makes allowances for the mysterious financier and his family. Soon hearts, minds and family savings are swept into the whirl of Augustus Melmotte's lavish parties and exciting investment plans - but is it all an elaborate swindle?
Anthony Trollope was born on 24 April 1815 and attended both Harrow and Winchester schools. His family were poor and eventually were forced to move to Belgium, where his father died. His mother, Frances Trollope, supported the family through writing. Trollope began a life-long career in the civil service with a position as clerk in the General Post Office in London - he is also credited with later introducing the pillar box. He published his first novel, The Macdermots of Ballycloran in 1847, but his fourth novel, The Warden (1855) began the series of 'Barsetshire' novels for which he was to become best known. This series of five novels featuring interconnecting characters spanned twenty years of Trollope's career as a novelist, as did the 'Palliser' series. He wrong over 47 novels in total, as well as short stories, biographies, travel books and his own autobiography, which was published posthumously in 1883. Trollope resigned from the Post Office in 1867 and stood for Parliament as a Liberal, though he was not elected. He died on 6 December 1882.
"Trollope's masterpiece...its examination of how hopes of easy money can corrupt individuals and sections of society remains relevant today... It is all too easy to imagine the "Great Financier", Augustus Melmotte a shadowy, egotistical and tyrannical swindler, at the top of a contemporary investment bank." Observer "Dominating the narrative is the majestically dishonest Augustus Melmotte: a speculative railroad financier who buys an English society only too willing to sell itself...The darkest of Trollope's 47 novels." Guardian "A tale of financial skulduggery reminiscent of recent city scandals" Daily Telegraph "His subtle depiction of relationships and the struggle to make decisions is unrivalled. He's so funny, so perceptive, so clear-sighted about the pursuit of money and power and status. Everyone with a pulse should read him." -- Francesca Simon Guardian
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