Vile Bodies

Vile Bodies Evelyn Waugh s second novel Vile Bodies is his tribute to London s smart set It introduces us to society as it used to be but that now is gone forever and probably for good

  • Title: Vile Bodies
  • Author: Evelyn Waugh
  • ISBN: 9780316926119
  • Page: 261
  • Format: Paperback
  • Evelyn Waugh s second novel, Vile Bodies is his tribute to London s smart set It introduces us to society as it used to be but that now is gone forever, and probably for good.

    One thought on “Vile Bodies”

    1. 2.5 starsWaugh’s second novel is a rather bleak comic satire on the “Bright Young Things” of the 1920s. It is a witty series of anecdotes, often rather disjointed. The title is from the funeral service and the style mimics Eliot and modernism. The pace is breathless and there is a line in a Disney song which runs “busy going nowhere”. Indeed there is an inscription from Carroll at the beginning “it takes all the running you can do to keep in the same place”. The plot is fairly thin [...]

    2. Unputdownable; both excitingly modern & original, a novel about manners & society and all that jazz. I have seriously not read something this comical and smart and sad since (my all-time fave) “A Confederacy of Dunces.” The sharp dialogue is more than clever: it constructs a full little universe in which bright young creatures can party it up like there’s no tomorrow. Love everything about it: the tone, the pace, the interaction of so many personalities. Fantastic: I read all 321 p [...]

    3. "Ooooh what's that shiny thing, it's hurting my eyes.""Sorry, that'd be me, I'm a bright young thing. Avert your eyes lest they be burned from their sockets.""Wow, so what is a bright young thing then? Forgive my ignorance but I'm just not that cultured.""Don't worry, its an easy premise to grasp - here, let me explain we bright young things are an erudite group of social laaah-de-dahs who favour a bohemian life style. We like the finer things in life and indulge our love of drinking, dancing an [...]

    4. Updated thoughts can be found here - youtu/msKfCg6fUzoI just finished reading the gorgeous 1930 novel, Vile Bodies by the old genius of a boy, Evelyn Waugh.I feel it's not too soon to admit to this already being one of my favorite books of all time. Just lovely in every way.I'd already seen the hilarious 2003 film adaptation by my hero, Stephen Fry but I actually think I like the book even more.So rich with wit and humor. so full of characters that one would love to share a bottle (or 40) of fiz [...]

    5. Vile bodies, vile people, vile attitudes, only they could have named themselves 'bright young things'. Good book, Evelyn Waugh knows his own kind but also knows how to send them up.

    6. За пръв път чета Ивлин Уо и стилът доста ми напомни на Фицджералд. Така де, Бурните двадесет, Златните двадесет and all that jazz. Всъщност действието се развива малко преди Първата световна война, но духът на идещата епоха на джаза витае във въздуха. Определено вакханалията никога [...]

    7. Very interesting and a different world to today. So much scandal and great characters.I felt it was slow at parts. Some characters i loved and some i really didnt.Everyone just seemed like upper class socicalite rebels. I heard a quote that i found matched what I thought of the book:"Vile Bodies, Vile People, Vile Attitudes"

    8. Reading Evelyn Waugh is like watching an elaborate, adult cartoon. His writing is beyond the usual satire, black humour, cynicism and all other attributes it was gratified with. Its extraordinary visual quality is supported by few epic features, and it is called a novel only in the absence of a better term, as justly observed Alan Dale in his review on Blogcritics. Therefore, if you look for a cleverly deployed plot, strong characters and coherent actions, or balanced oppositions and moral battl [...]

    9. An odd, fun read, more broadly humorous than I expected. Set among the out of control bright young things of London who are quite crazily sent up by Waugh, Vile Bodies is enjoyable and crazy yet also shows some of the pathos of the time lurking in the background. I think I prefer Waugh's more subtle work but would have to read more to be sure.Then there are some great passages that I really did love such as the following.The truth is that motor cars offer a very happy illustration of the metaphy [...]

    10. "Who's that awful looking woman?""She's no one. Mrs. Panrast she's called now.""She seems to know you.""Yes. I've known her all my life. As a matter of fact, she's my mother.""My dear, how too shaming."If you’ve got a taste for Ronald Firbank’s prose and you enjoy seeing Thomas Hardy getting skewered, I think you’ll gleefully sink your teeth into Waugh’s Vile Bodies (1930). The book’s a nice slab of satire that hasn’t lost its humor, though now its bite may resemble more a vicious gu [...]

    11. First impression? Hilarious. Total spot-on satire of 1930s, pseudo/wannabe posh society in Britain - and I can say that with such confidence because I was there and all. Well, no, not quite, not by about 53 years and an ocean, but I do live in New York, where desperate social climbers - the "see and be seen-ers" - and tacky people with a bit of money proliferate against my wishes. The difference is that somewhere along the road, we stopped satirizing these people and took to glorifying them inst [...]

    12. "Our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the saviourWho shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself."Philipians 3:17-21This book, the best-titled book by one of literature's great titlers, snuck up on me. It's really fun and quick to read - satirical and absurdist - and suddenly toward the end I started to think that maybe it's not a little but quite a bit [...]

    13. I often wonder about book blurbs, because really how many times can you describe a book with the words funny and hilarious and have the book actually be funny and hilarious. My edition of this book has a blurb by the New York Time's that says "It may shock you, but it will make you laugh". Well New York Times, let's see the tally shall we: times I was shocked by this book = zero; times I laughed = maybe two and a half, but it wasn't a hearty laugh, it was more of a sarcastic "Ha!" Now, a better [...]

    14. Superb satire, downright funny at times, with silly characters flailing about and making poor decisions, but I feel strangely melancholic about the ending - which, I suppose, was Waugh's intent.

    15. This book really snuck up on me. For the first 100 pages I kept thinking it was a cute little book but only worth 3*. The more I read though the more I enjoyed it and appreciated its wit and charm. Still it was only a 3.5* read. I finished and thought about it for awhile when like a thunderbolt the true value of the book hit me. The parody of the romantic comedy centers around Adam Fenwick-Symes, reportedly a bright, young, up and coming novelist who has as his love interest, another bright youn [...]

    16. Vile Bodies is no Brideshead Revisited, but then, if you read my (much) earlier post on Brideshead, you'll know that even Brideshead itself didn't quite live up to it's own first 100 pages for me. What I'd really like to do is just read the beginnings of Evelyn Waugh novels from now on. From the first pages of Vile Bodies I was filled with the delicious anticipation of forthcoming satirical wit, but just as I experienced with Brideshead, Handful of Ashes, and even Decline and Fall, the rest of t [...]

    17. Stephen Fry filmed it under the title Bright Young Things. Implausible aristos and hangers on, and often written in brief banal sentences that are more reminiscent of Janet and John reading primers than good literature and perhaps shows how shallow and ephemeral these people were. Nevertheless, very readable.

    18. Vile Bodies was Evelyn Waugh’s second novel, first published in 1930 it is dedicated to Bryan and Diana Guinness –the sister and brother-in-law of Nancy Mitford, Diana of course later becoming the infamous Diana Moseley. "Ooooh what's that shiny thing, it's hurting my eyes.""Sorry, that'd be me, I'm a bright young thing. Avert your eyes lest they be burned from their sockets.""Wow, so what is a bright young thing then? Forgive my ignorance but I'm just not that cultured."Vile Bodies is a won [...]

    19. VILE BODIES. (1930). Evelyn Waugh. ****.This was Waugh’s second novel, and full of his wit and cleverness that so impressed his early readers. It was the story of Britain’s “Bright Young Things,” the young people who rose to the top of the social scene in the period between the two Wars. In fact, Waugh even predicted WW II, since the novel ends up being told from one of its battlefields. There are lots of members of the “Things” introduced in his story; if you are trying to pick out [...]

    20. I really wish I could rate by half stars too. This is really a Three-and-a-half star book.I enjoyed this. It was fairly typical of pre-war Waugh. It's light, breezy, wonderfully written, and takes itself about as seriously as its characters take themselves. What it felt like, really, was a Wodehouse novel with a mean streak. Much of Waugh's social critique could be leveled at today's society as well. His characters seemed, for all their dated speech and clothing, to be people that I knew. Shiftl [...]

    21. This is the novel I would most like to have written myself. (I know, I know.) I love everything Evelyn Waugh wrote up to and including The Loved One; after that I think it goes a bit awry, and I’ve never liked the Sword of Honour trilogy. As he got older, Waugh seemed to distance himself from his comic-satiric genius, as if he thought it was unfitting to a man of his status. But the comedies are the works that have endured, and none is better than Vile Bodies. It’s bitter and sharp, sometime [...]

    22. It's a satirical and deceptively whimsical take on wealth and debauchery in the 1920's. Sort of like a children's book for adults! There are an awful lot of characters, but I suppose it's the nature of this book to flit about. And actually, I think it carries more depth than is generally acknowledged. In any case, it does a beautiful job of bringing that period to life.I've heard that Nina was based on Nancy Mitford, but I'm not certain of that.

    23. A delicious story about a doomed sort of confused "aristocracy" (just ask them). Lots of laugh out loud moments (really, just ask Tim who was trying to sleep). Best not to think too much about the reality that they have once again taken control of All Matters on Earth. Just giggle at the adorable Colonel Blount.

    24. I fear that, if 'Vile Bodies' is typical of his work, I shall have to add Evelyn Waugh to the list of critically acclaimed and popular writers whom I simply can't get to grips with. (EM Forster and Charles Dickens are already on that list.) 'Vile Bodies' is a dull and very disappointing book. First published in 1930 (when Waugh was in his late 20s), it's one of the author's earliest novels. I've not read any of Waugh's other work. I can but hope that his writing improved considerably after this. [...]

    25. Up til now I was 0-2 with Waugh, which might elicit a "Waugh is me," which, alas, it just did"The Loved One," his famous satire of the death business in the USA mildly amused me in high school. I found it at least more interesting than "Scoop," a look at the news biz that I barely remember anything about at all other than the lingering memory of being bitterly disappointed by it."Vile Bodies" is often said to be his masterpiece, and so I just waded into the first 50 pages and find them mildly am [...]

    26. Maybe even 4½ stars I'll have to think about that. In any case, I found this too, too funny! The plot revolves around the Bright Young Things trying to get by with little money and no ambition but it is the characters that make this novel rather than the plot.

    27. Do you you think that the neediness of seeing and being seen is a particularly human trait? If so, Evelyn Waugh's Vile Bodies is an embodiment of that trait. The distinguishing feature of the elite of the 1920s society was their shallow frippery and life-is-a-long-party attitude. Waugh's own comment, 'I regard writing not as investigation of character but as an exercise in the use of language, and with this I am obsessed. I have no technical psychological interest. It is drama, speech and events [...]

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