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Enjoyed this.Interesting plagiarism debate The plagiarised plagiariser Enjoyed this.Interesting plagiarism debate The plagiarised plagiariser After reading the reviews of this book, and how gut wrenching the ending was I thought I d give it a go I d just re read Forster s Maurice and was wanting a bit of a gay period story Oh dear I know that it s possible to have a hateful protagonist, and for that to add to a book but even horrible people need to grow, or at least go on some journey and be different at the end even if they are still horrible Brian Botsford does go on a journey, a literal one, and comes back the same I was di After reading the reviews of this book, and how gut wrenching the ending was I thought I d give it a go I d just re read Forster s Maurice and was wanting a bit of a gay period story Oh dear I know that it s possible to have a hateful protagonist, and for that to add to a book but even horrible people need to grow, or at least go on some journey and be different at the end even if they are still horrible Brian Botsford does go on a journey, a literal one, and comes back the same I was disappointed by the story Upper middle class writer briefly lives with a working class boy, treats him terribly, awfully, then realises he loves him Kind of Well, actually, no, it would be twenty years until I even contemplated marriage between two men Part of why I didn t like it is the picture it paints of gay men All gay men cheat, it seems to say all gay men go cottaging, desperately I m gay and I do neither of those things Alec Scudder didn t do those things, neither did Edward Phelan What is Leavitt trying to say then Upper class gays do The story was a non story, the main character didn t change all the way through I agree with other reviewers who say it s perfectly acceptable to have a villain as the protagonist, and to be able to enjoy that book or story but I can t condone the way Brian treated Edward, his cowardice or lying, and worst of all he learned nothing from his behaviour and its consequences, not even regret Read the book if you want to, there s lots of beautiful description in there, and there s no denying Leavitt is a good writer Having read this, I doubt his storytelling abilities though Every chapter ends with a wistful, forced image much like a hollywood blockbuster I stopped being young , Then the letter came , As if it mattered As if he weren t watching my every move The characters talk of Oscar Wilde, E.M Forster, and it seems that Leavitt wanted this book to be a sort of Maurice or Wildean tale it falls far short It lacks the wit, tenderness and story that Forster or Wilde s works do I wish it had been great, I wish Brian Botsford hadn t been such a lazy, cowardly cheat but it wasn t, and he was I may be adding this to my favorite shelf in the next couple days Yes, this is a title parody of Winston Churchill s 1938 While England Slept Leavitt s While England Sleeps takes place in 1936 1937 and focuses on a young man s coming to age story in London.Brian Botsford, the main character, along with his Oxford classmates, Nigel, John, and Rupert are in a different caste and rebel for the cause against the rising Fascist power in Spain Edward Phelan, with Communist beliefs, falls in love wi I may be adding this to my favorite shelf in the next couple days Yes, this is a title parody of Winston Churchill s 1938 While England Slept Leavitt s While England Sleeps takes place in 1936 1937 and focuses on a young man s coming to age story in London.Brian Botsford, the main character, along with his Oxford classmates, Nigel, John, and Rupert are in a different caste and rebel for the cause against the rising Fascist power in Spain Edward Phelan, with Communist beliefs, falls in love with Brian, and their sexual relationship is not only erotic on page but believable in heartbreak.Highly recommend, and after reading two David Leavitt books now, I m a fan From the blurb At a meeting of republican sympathisers in London, Brian Botsford, a young middle class writer and Cambridge graduate, meets Edward Phelan, an idealistic, self educated London Underground worker They share a mutual attraction Across the divisions of class they begin an affair in secrecy.But Edward posesses an unproblematic capacity to accept Brian and the love that dare not speak its name, whereas Brian iscautious and under family pressure agrees to be set up with a suit From the blurb At a meeting of republican sympathisers in London, Brian Botsford, a young middle class writer and Cambridge graduate, meets Edward Phelan, an idealistic, self educated London Underground worker They share a mutual attraction Across the divisions of class they begin an affair in secrecy.But Edward posesses an unproblematic capacity to accept Brian and the love that dare not speak its name, whereas Brian iscautious and under family pressure agrees to be set up with a suitable young woman Pushed to the point of crisis Edward threatens to volunteer to fight Franco in Spain.There are to my perception, at least a few inaccuracies in the blurb, but I won t quibble over them This is an excellent book which I devoured in two sittings.It has a readability that draws the eye, and the narrator s voice is completely convincing It s written in first person, there is a faux prologue written in 1978 where Brian explains that he s now living in America and considers himself to be an American and an epilogue which looks back at 1938 from that fifty year gap Both of these devices go far to convince that the book was written by Brian and not by David Leavitt.Like As Meat Loves Salt although not to the same extent Brian is not a likeable or attractive character A product of his class, he coasts through life, unlike Edward who takes what he wants withenthusiasm, facing what he is face on Brian still thinks that being homosexual is just something one did at school and that he would get over it, although it s obvious he s deluding himself He s a playwright, and he plays at it, having no drive to support himself he sponges off his Aunt Constance or Inconstance as he cruelly calls her, as she doesn t pay him regularly enough for him to depend on her support He mumps off his friends and generally won t commit to one thing or another, which leads to the crisis event in the book one which he will regret, and will haunt him for the rest of his life.I found it to be tremendously absorbing, like the best of historicals, it immersed me in the era without info dumping As I ve said before, if a book reads like it was written in the time, rather than about the time, it earns big kudos from me The class divide might be hard for non Brits to grasp but pre war it was stillrelevant than people would suppose I felt ashamed of Brian s inability to admit his affair to his own friends, but then found it perfectly acceptable to talk to Edward s sister about it I wanted to smack him with the clue by four several times in the book but that s ok that meant that the author was doing his job.It also brings the situation in Europe at that time into sharp relief, there s a lovely sub plot with a friend of Brian s who is attempting to get a friend out of Europe which breaks your heart, and you, as the reader, knowing what is going to happen in a few short years, hold your breath and weep at the hopeless cause and loss of life that is the Spanish Civil War.If you prefer to like your protagonists, then this book might not be for you, but if you want a meaty and rich story that takes you so viscerally into the period that you can smell the steam engines and feel the bubble of the champagne of the Fast Set, then you ll enjoy this as much as I did A definite keeper I don t have the language for book reviews and have no wish to repeat what other reviewers have said in much better English I found the book very engrossing and showed a flawed main character who lives with the results of his behaviour for the rest of his life Although it sounds dramatic it could in fact happen to anyone not knowing whether something you did or left undone would have affected someone else s life profoundly I read the book straight through and regretted finishing it so quick I don t have the language for book reviews and have no wish to repeat what other reviewers have said in much better English I found the book very engrossing and showed a flawed main character who lives with the results of his behaviour for the rest of his life Although it sounds dramatic it could in fact happen to anyone not knowing whether something you did or left undone would have affected someone else s life profoundly I read the book straight through and regretted finishing it so quickly I ll re read it at my leisure Well worth any expense incurred This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here I read this book in a single sitting, I couldn t put it down The trajectory of the relationship and the pathos of Brian s denial of what all dream of, passionate love and simple commitment whether it is ever possible to achieve either in the form presented in this story or not is another question , and the subsequent loss of all through the meaningless and unecessary death of Edward, had me pinned in ways I would never have expected Much of the intensity the story carried for me, may have had I read this book in a single sitting, I couldn t put it down The trajectory of the relationship and the pathos of Brian s denial of what all dream of, passionate love and simple commitment whether it is ever possible to achieve either in the form presented in this story or not is another question , and the subsequent loss of all through the meaningless and unecessary death of Edward, had me pinned in ways I would never have expected Much of the intensity the story carried for me, may have had much to do with events in my own life, I left the barren hearth of home for the futile endeavour of a war in Cambodia in the 70 s, and a tragedy unfolded there for me in exactly the same fluid, incremental way that Edward s death evolved in this story It was on me before I even realised that it was circling.It is not difficult for me to imagine that had I been alive in the 1930 s in Europe I would almost certainly have ended up and probably ended in Spain It carried so many similarities to the debacle I did throw myself into confusion, dedication, heroism, idealism, betrayal,intrigue, romance, futility and much death and destruction for a simple beautiful people who deserved better.For me the most impact in this story came through the simple straightforward accounting of how one person fuelled by fear and the expectations of culture, in driven pursuit of what they think they want can cruelly, almost mindlessly close their heart to another.I was saddened deeply by the threads from my own past drawn by this story so vibrantly into my present |DOWNLOAD KINDLE ♩ Enquanto a Inglaterra dorme ♂ Brian Bostford tem vinte e tr s anos, escritor, e regressou a Londres depois de uma estadia na Alemanha Inquieto com o que se passa sua volta, n o compartilha as ideias pol ticas da classe onde nasceu Numa reuni o organizada pelo Partido Comunista para apoiar a causa da Rep blica espanhola conhece Edward Phelan, um jovem prolet rio que trabalha no metro de Londres, e pouco depois come am a viver juntos Mas Brian, apesar da felicidade que sente com Edward, est convencido de que a sua homossexualidade uma quest o passageira e inicia uma confusa rela o com uma mulher Edward decide ent o ir combater para EspanhaA partir da , o romance at ent o uma cr nica subtil sobre os jovens intelectuais fascinados pela esquerda e pelo dandismo converte se num admir vel fresco sobre um dos per odos mais cruciais da nossa hist ria Dreadful The plagiarism alone would justify one star, but even on its own merits the book fails It s chock full of solecisms about both England and Spain in the 30s, making it obvious even in ignorance of the facts that Leavitt must have borrowed heavily when he wasn t engaged in outright fantasy A truly ridiculous book. A book so bad I had to solicit aesthetic slurs to describe it One friend suggested waistcoat ripper and we ll stick with that I didn t even need to see the controversy over plagiarism mentioned in a Goodreads review to know this book was a ripoff The author s prose changes with the setting when his characters are having sex in England, their speech and mannerisms sound like the half informed imaginings of a pretentious 17 year old who just binge watched the TV serial of Brideshead Revis A book so bad I had to solicit aesthetic slurs to describe it One friend suggested waistcoat ripper and we ll stick with that I didn t even need to see the controversy over plagiarism mentioned in a Goodreads review to know this book was a ripoff The author s prose changes with the setting when his characters are having sex in England, their speech and mannerisms sound like the half informed imaginings of a pretentious 17 year old who just binge watched the TV serial of Brideshead Revisited when his characters are having sex in Spain, the book reads like gay Hemingway An incidental character keeps dropping in and out of the narrative for the sole purpose of allowing Leavitt to steal from Christopher Isherwood as well The blurb on Kindle made this book look an interesting gay spy novel but it s just bad gay romance Oh, and I ve got to hate on onething the book takes place in the mid 1930 s, but Leavitt, the lazy idiot, didn t do enough research to learn who was Prime Minister It was Stanley Baldwin or Neville Chamberlaine, you moron, not Anthony Eden I know you didn t have Google in 1993 when you excreted this garbage but there were encyclopedias Damn, I hated this book This was an intriguing read for me, I love this period, Laurie Lees As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morningis one of my favourite books, and there are similarities which is a good thing I also like the casual way that sex was sometimes dealt with in the 1930 s, at times.This started off so well, it was funny, there is scene where an elderly relative writes a letter praising the way that he s dealing with Germany, where I spat water out Brian and Edwards romance starts off gloriously, and I was s This was an intriguing read for me, I love this period, Laurie Lees As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morningis one of my favourite books, and there are similarities which is a good thing I also like the casual way that sex was sometimes dealt with in the 1930 s, at times.This started off so well, it was funny, there is scene where an elderly relative writes a letter praising the way that he s dealing with Germany, where I spat water out Brian and Edwards romance starts off gloriously, and I was seduced by romance reading into imagining this would be at the very least HFN Edward s family are touching and funny and Edward himself is a beautifully realised character.Then Brian, a total product of his upper class breeding where its ok to fuck boys, but one day you will fall in love with a woman and get married, reverts back to type The way the relationship flounders and Edward feels the distance between them was achingly sad and real.The way the book ended was not totally satisfactory for me, bu the writing was grand