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About the Author: Joseph Conrad

Joseph Conrad (born Józef Teodor Konrad Korzeniowski ) was a Polish-born English novelist who today is most famous for Heart of Darkness, his fictionalized account of Colonial Africa.

Conrad left his native Poland in his middle teens to avoid conscription into the Russian Army. He joined the French Merchant Marine and briefly employed himself as a wartime gunrunner. He then began to work aboard British ships, learning English from his shipmates. He was made a Master Mariner, and served more than sixteen years before an event inspired him to try his hand at writing.

He was hired to take a steamship into Africa, and according to Conrad, the experience of seeing firsthand the horrors of colonial rule left him a changed man.

Joseph Conrad settled in England in 1894, the year before he published his first novel. He was deeply interested in a small number of writers both in French and English whose work he studied carefully. This was useful when, because a need to come to terms with his experience, lead him to write Heart of Darkness, in 1899, which was followed by other fictionalized explorations of his life.

He has been lauded as one of the most powerful, insightful, and disturbing novelists in the English canon despite coming to English later in life, which allowed him to combine it with the sensibilities of French, Russian, and Polish literature.


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Goodreads rating: 3.71

Paperback, by Read Books

ISBN10: 144555870X | ISBN13: 9781445558707

Many chronicles have been written about life at sea, but few, if any, can compare with Joseph Conrad's masterpiece. It is the story of one unremarkable steamship captain, pitted against a storm of incredible fury. Captain Macwhirr has a reputation as a solid, steadfast man, who "having just enough imagination to carry him through each successive day, and no more" cannot fully believe any storm would be a match for his powerful ship. So, when the barometer and other clues begin to hint at trouble ahead, he is only moderately concerned and unwilling to change course and lose precious time-a decision that may prove more costly than he could ever have imagined.

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