DISRAELI RISING by Maurice Edelman


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This is the second volume of the proposed trilogy which began with Disraeli in Love. It starts in 1838 with Victoria's coronation and ends fourteen years later as Disraeli is named Chancellor of the Exchequer (ironic, in view of his debt-ridden history) and Leader of the House of Commons. Edelman, who is himself a Conservative M.P., concentrates now on the more serious Disraeli. His playboy days are over and he is looking for the sort of comfortable, monied attachment that he finds with the widow, twelve years his senior, of his former colleague. He can now devote himself to his political career, continue to write his novels and try to extricate himself from the consequences of earlier romantic and financial misalliances. His political philosophy shifts and he becomes the spokesman for the Protectionists and the landed gentry, though he is never accepted by the Tories as one of them. What accounts then for his success? His tenacity? His devotion to his career? His surviving his opponents? Was he merely a rank opportunist as his enemies charged? His fictional biographer gives us the settings, the suppositions, the decor, the smiles and nods, but the essential character illumination is missing. So far this series proves to be another example of more being less.

Pub Date: April 7th, 1975
Publisher: Stein & Day