Without further comment... in his inclement, howling old age, Ahab’s soul, shut up in
After discussing Anna Karenina, War and Peace, Madame Bovary, and Half of a Yellow Sun, Smith writes
The epic inaction of our summer holidays is perhaps what makes them suitable for the reading of epics, especially those set in times of war. When I am doing nothing but watching a 4-year-old dig a large hole in the sand, it's nice to know that somewhere else the Russian army is advancing. I once went to the Bahamas with my mother and brothers, but in truth I went on holiday with Daniel Deronda. A decade later, I still remember Eliot's sentences better than the charms of the company.