John Fowles’ The Magus was a literary landmark of the 1960s. Nicholas Urfe goes to a Greek island to teach at a private school and becomes enmeshed in curious happenings at the home of a mysterious Greek recluse, Maurice Conchis. Are these events, involving attractive young English sisters, just psychological games, or an elaborate joke, or more? Reality shifts as the story unfolds.
The Magus reflected the issues of the 1960s perfectly, but even almost half a century after its first publication, it continues to create tension and concern, remaining the page-turner that it was when it was first released.
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Great reading by Nicholas Boulton
Form and content perfectly matched. A great reading from Nicholas Boulton of a very enjoyable and thought provoking book.
I am now 50 and have not revisited this novel (one of my favourites in my earlier years) in detail since I last read it in my 20's. It was still a riveting read, although - perhaps with maturity - I now see more of the things that don't quite work or seem dated. Overall, still electrifying with a strong propulisve narrative drive allied to a consideration of how to approach life and love.
Almost all the characters were interesting in some way, even if some worked far better than others.
I thought Nicholas Boulton's reading was absolutely outstanding - and that is what has driven me to this review - he deserves the credit. He pitched Nicolas Urfe's voice exactly how I imagined it: cynical and not entirely likeable, yet still eliciting a degree of sympathy with the listener. The supporting voices: various greeks, germans, women as well as men were also very well presented and clearly distinguishable - without turning them into caricatures. The pace and inflection of the reading was even, but varied where necessary in a nuanced and subtle way to underline and represent emotions.
I wouldn't. It's already been tried with Michael Caine and although watchable could not really represent the ideas Fowles was bringing out in the novel.