The Comedians

Graham Greene Paul Theroux

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The Comedians

The Comedians By Graham Greene Paul Theroux The Comedians Three men meet on a ship bound for Haiti a world in the grip of the corrupt Papa Doc and the Tontons Macoute his sinister secret police Brown the hotelier Smith the innocent American and Jones the

  • Title: The Comedians
  • Author: Graham Greene Paul Theroux
  • ISBN: 9780143039198
  • Page: 299
  • Format: Paperback
  • The Comedians By Graham Greene Paul Theroux Three men meet on a ship bound for Haiti, a world in the grip of the corrupt Papa Doc and the Tontons Macoute, his sinister secret police Brown the hotelier, Smith the innocent American, and Jones the confidence man these are the comedians of Greene s title Hiding behind their actors masks, they hesitate on the edge of life They are men afraid of love, afraid of paThree men meet on a ship bound for Haiti, a world in the grip of the corrupt Papa Doc and the Tontons Macoute, his sinister secret police Brown the hotelier, Smith the innocent American, and Jones the confidence man these are the comedians of Greene s title Hiding behind their actors masks, they hesitate on the edge of life They are men afraid of love, afraid of pain, afraid of fear itselfAlternate Cover Edition of ISBN 9780099478379, published by Vintage 2004
    The Comedians By Graham Greene Paul Theroux

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    One thought on “The Comedians

    1. Jim Fonseca on said:

      Our main character is a world weary drifter The novel starts with him returning to Haiti on a cargo ship with just a handful of passengers There are so few Europeans in Haiti that all these passengers and some of the crew enter the story again Disengaged from his courtesan mother and even unsure what his last name really is, he has worked in European restaurants and sold forged low end paintings His mother dies and leaves him a hotel cabaret in Port au Prince He attempts to run the hotel and has [...]

    2. William1 on said:

      This is without exception my favorite Graham Greene novel Love and murder in 1960 s Haiti among the evil Papa Doc Duvalier s Tonton Macute The evocation of landscape and murderous heat and voodoo would alone be enough to hold our attention But there s than that there s a great story of intrigue and jealousy I cannot recommend it highly enough.

    3. Evan on said:

      I ve just finished this and am basking in some kind of awestruck state The I read of Greene, the I m slain The main character, Brown, must be a sort of surrogate for the author jaded, cynical, fatalistic a realist who nonetheless has just enough of that kernel of optimism that allows him to hope against hope, to sometimes do the right thing even as the cowardly part of him offers token resistance.The book takes place in Haiti in the early 1960s during the early days of the terroristic reign of [...]

    4. Το Άσχημο Ρύζι Καρολίνα on said:

      , , , , , , , , , , , 1957 , , , , , , , , , 1% , , 20 19 , 21 , , , The Power and the Glory.

    5. Bettie☯ on said:

      Baron Samedi faces off stick twitching Tontons Macoute Photo by Charles Carri Read by Tim Piggot SmithDescription Three men meet on a ship bound for Haiti, a world in the grip of the corrupt Papa Doc and the Tontons Macoute, his sinister secret police Brown the hotelier, Smith the innocent American, and Jones the confidence man these are the comedians of Greene s title Hiding behind their actors masks, they hesitate on the edge of life They are men afraid of love, afraid of pain, afraid of fear [...]

    6. A. Dawes on said:

      3.5 Must be my Graham Greene year, read him sporadically before, but now I can t seem to get enough of him The story takes place in the madhouse that is Haiti during the early 1960s Haiti at the time was a melting pot of voodoo, colonialism, and terror The corrupt dictator Papa Doc Duvalier, rules through fear and unpredictability, and many from abroad are unsafe as are the locals There s comment here from Greene on how the so called superpowers of the Cold War supported such horrific regimes fo [...]

    7. Teresa on said:

      At several points during my reading of this novel because of its crisp, realistic dialogue dangerous setting and intriguing, imperfect characters I imagined it as a movie I just looked it up on and, yes, there is a 1967 movie with, ugh, Burton and Taylor, not at all whom I envisioned for the roles.Perhaps because of its title, I thought the novel would be of a sharp, exaggerated satire, but, no, I suppose the Haiti of Duvalier was surreal enough At first meeting the three men described in the GR [...]

    8. Steve on said:

      Several years back, after reading Robert Stone s underappreciated Bay of Souls, I saw someone somewhere say that Stone had departed from his Conradian foundation, and had pulled a Delillo on readers I puzzled over that, because even though Bay of Souls is a change in approach, I didn t see any of the incomprehensible Falling Man in Stone s hallucinogenic tropical nightmare book With Graham Greene s The Comedians, however, I believe I have found the source for Stone s trippy foray And it makes se [...]

    9. Sketchbook on said:

      Monstrously good and disturbing.A few hundred miles off the Florida coast you ll find an evil floating slum, says Greene, who makes us aware of the violent and corrupt republic of Haiti Throughout the 60s it was ruled by Papa Doc Duvalier, a crackpot viper tyrant Hitler meets a runaway from any PG Wodehouse novel , who jibbered anti Com jingles Result he murdered thousands of his own people while pocketing millions in US aid.Welcome to a perfect Greeneland If GG were alive he d write a devastati [...]

    10. AC on said:

      This was ok some interesting reflections on the comedians in the middle but frankly, imo, and given Greene s stature, it should have been better Hence, a book that s just a notch below 4 gets rounded down to 3 First of all, it has none of the aching beauty of the Quiet American perhaps because Haiti is not as romantic in my eyes as is Vietnam Secondly, for a book that pretends to be a political thriller of sorts , the plot is simply much, much too loose It really feels as though he is thinking w [...]

    11. Paradoxe on said:

      Ensam , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , outsider , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 342, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 5 , , , .

    12. Evi * on said:

      Non avrei mai pensato di abbandonare un libro di Graham Greene, non un abbandono definitivo perch Greene, ma evidentemente per me non il suo momento.

    13. Daniel Villines on said:

      Our lives are spent creating our own realities by mixing facts and beliefs together The result may be plausible but it certainly is not real And who can blame us This very mixture helped us to survive Fact the lion is stalking me Belief if I run to that place, I will live And so societies are born, careers are made, and we survive all because we acted on the facts at hand in conjunction with our beliefs in an outcome.At times, however, the mixture becomes grossly imbalanced Our beliefs are trans [...]

    14. Drew on said:

      Not a terribly funny book, despite the title Not that I expected it to be, given other stuff I ve read by him I was mostly intrigued by the fact that it takes place in Haiti during Papa Doc Duvalier s regime a supremely messed up time and place And Greene does Haiti well it seems like they were made for each other, though I ve got the feeling Greene can evoke any place pretty well This is marginally lighter fare than either The Power and the Glory or The Heart of the Matter, and considerably re [...]

    15. Darwin8u on said:

      We mustn t complain too much of being comedians it s an honourable profession If only we could be good ones the world might gain at least a sense of style We have failed that s all We are bad comedians, we aren t bad men I started out thinking I was going to just read a minor Greene, and finished the novel once again shocked by my ability to completely underestimate Greene The Comedians is a dark tragedy set in a Haitian Hell ruled by Papa Doc and his Tonton Macoute Into this tortured hell float [...]

    16. Yasmin on said:

      Many great reviews have witten on this book, and if you are looking for some piece of info that will help you pick your next fav book, this isn t the right one for you to read Once again, this book was one that fed my theme addict lust for dark, gloomy noir sort of scenery Loved the stuff, got super depressed through the whole thing, and felt for all the characters My favorites are the Smiths, they were so perfectly real I will read from John Greene later on.

    17. Cheryl on said:

      I found the plot and the characters to be less developed than in other Graham Greene novels I ve read An OK read, but not his best.

    18. umberto on said:

      3.75 starsMy enjoyment while reading this 292 page novel was somewhere between his Brighton Rock 3.5 and The Honorary Consul 4 so I added.25 for it First published in 1966, the novel seemed uninteresting in its first one third so I had no choice but kept going and gradually found that it was arguably enjoyable, that is, we can enjoy it if we don t mind its various characters who, willingly or unwillingly, involve in Haiti under the rule of Papa Doc, especially the Tontons Macoute, his notorious [...]

    19. BrokenTune on said:

      Any news of the Baron It was the name some gave to the President as an alternative to Papa Doc we dignified his shambling shabby figure with the title of Baron Samedi, who in the Voodoo mythology haunts the cemeteries in his top hat and tails, smoking his big cigar They say he hasn t been seen for three months He doesn t even come to a window of the palace to watch the band He might be dead for all anyone knows If he can die without a silver bullet So far, The Comedians is my favourite Greene no [...]

    20. Elaine on said:

      Graham Greene is my new favorite author Paul Theroux dissed this book in his introduction, but it was just Paul Theroux showing that he doesn t know much This is sort of a book about Haiti and totalitarianism and brutality and corruption and the Evil Empire America but it is a book about loss, rootlessness, the emptiness of the middle of the night, fatherlessness, faith and lack thereof Greene is deep, clean, concise Theroux says that it seems dated 40 years on, but that s only if you focus on [...]

    21. Roderick Hart on said:

      The edition I have begins with a letter to a publisher which we would be better without Because the story is told by one of the characters, Greene points out that Brown is not Greene Well, I wouldn t have thought of that Then he notes that Brown, like Greene, is a Catholic He justifies this on statistical grounds, which is just about as stupid as you can get It is often forgotten that, even in the case of a novel laid in England, the story when it contains than ten characters would lack verisim [...]

    22. Cbj on said:

      SPOILER ALERT The Comedians is a book that can be enjoyed for the superficial things alone On the surface, the book is a thrilling adventure and a novel of place, set in Haiti The book begins on a ship carrying a few interesting characters the first person narrator Mr.Brown, the vegetarian couple the Smiths, the spooky Jones and the silent African who can only answer with yes or no Mr.Brown owns the Hotel Trianon in the uncertain land of Haiti The Smiths have arrived in Haiti to establish a vege [...]

    23. Paula M. on said:

      Graham Greene viajou pelo mundo para criar as suas excelentes hist rias e, sabe se que esta obra, publicada em 1966, deixou o ditador do Haiti profundamente transtornado A verdade sobre o que se passava neste pa s n o transparecia totalmente para o exterior e os EUA preferiam ignorar as atrocidades cometidas mais importante que os atropelos aos direitos humanos, era que os ideais comunistas n o se espalhassem e cimentassem na zona Est vamos em plena guerra fria Smith, Jones e Brown s o ent o per [...]

    24. Adam on said:

      I ve always wanted to read Greene because of my love for the film The Third Man, and I m not sure why I choose this one to start, but it was an excellent choice A cynical hotelier, a confidence man, and an idealist couple travel to an island ruled by a mad doctor, their respective names are Browne, Jones, and Smith What type of story is this Well this book discusses whether we are in tragedy, a comedy, an adventure story, or a romance and can never quite decide, in which lies the truth Set in a [...]

    25. Rob on said:

      Phenomenally good, even by Greene s standards, the Berkhamsted boy doing good with a classic tale on that saddest and most fascinating of countries, Haiti Set at the time of Papa Doc Duvalier and his chilling secret police, the Tonton Macoute, it s a bizarre tale where the only answer to the sequence of events is black humour of a very dark kind.The characters are well drawn and sympathetic including the fantasist Mr Jones and the decent Mr Smith while the narrator s lovelorn jealousy is a theme [...]

    26. Violet on said:

      A second reading, 5 Storytelling of unparalleled mastery, blackest humor imaginable, a great tale of jealousy and intrigue, the tumultuous historical events of Papa Doc s reign of terror in Haiti, totalitarianism, brutality and corruption, human weaknesses, cynicism and fatalism, the smidgen of hope, innocent naivete, all this and We should not complain about too much of being comedians, it s an honored profession If only we could be good, the world could gain at least a sense of style We have [...]

    27. Bill on said:

      absolutely excellent novel about haiti under papa doc duvalier.extremely ironic title as there wasn t anything remotely funny happening in that country under his ruled not much since then either.

    28. Erik Graff on said:

      My stepbrother, Erik Badger, went to Haiti after graduating from Shimer College at its old campus in Waukegan, Illinois His thesis advisor, Steve Werlin, had been working there off and on for years on aid projects Erik s job was to teach teachers to teach adults to read and write in the native creole First, however, he had to learn the language himself and this was accomplished by depositing him in a rural village where no one spoke English It worked.I bought this book with Mr Badger in mind His [...]

    29. Justin Evans on said:

      For Greene, this was epically long nearly 300 pages The heck Unwonted length aside, though, it s standard Greene foreign country, political machinations, darkness, weirdly sex obsessed leading man and his illicit, tortured relationship with a married woman, naive Americans, cynical Englishmen and so forth It s also, sadly, slightly substandard Greene as far as structure It s very flabby there are, in effect, three storylines, which only interact insofar as the characters involved happen to know [...]

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