IN SEARCH OF A CHARACTER by Graham Greene

IN SEARCH OF A CHARACTER

Two African Journals: Congo Journey And Convoy To West Africa (twentieth-century Classics)

KIRKUS REVIEW

This slim book consists of two journals which Greene kept on two trips to Africa- in 1941 and in 1959. The earlier, shorter and lesser of the two covers his wartime crossing by ship. While neither was intended for publication, the later journal is far more interesting. It is the original sketch book for the novel A Runt Out Case in which Greene secured the raw materials on the improserie in the Congo which became the terminus for querry, here a still unformulated and unnamed character. While much of the journal deals with the medical data he needed to authenticate the book he was to write, there is a good deal of peripheral material of general interest. Thoughts- and impressions- on the wing-give this its fresh spontaneity; Africa itself, often oppressive, or impressive, is "a cure for the sick heart"; the author, in search of a character as well as a locale, questions as well as observes, and Greene himself, depressed, discouraged, occasions some of the more meditative insights here (is he burnt out? will this be, as he states at one point, his last novel?) All in all, it is expectedly fragmentary and unexpectedly revealing, and of primary concern to those who are more seriously interested in Greene- the writer.
Pub Date: June 15th, 1961
ISBN: 014018578X
Page count: 116pp
Publisher: Viking
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15th, 1961




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