"Here, this young man, for example," Uncle Henry would say, indicating Martin with his walking stick, "he has finished college, one of the most expensive colleges in the world, and you ask him what he has learned, what he is prepared for. I absolutely don't know what what he is going to do next. In my time young men became doctors, soldiers, notaries, while he is probably dreaming of becoming an aviator or a gigolo."
Martin Edelweiss, a romantic young Russian émigré, has fled with his mother from St. Petersburg to Switzerland in 1919. He attends Cambridge, falls in love with Sonia Zilanov, and travels to Berlin in pursuit of her. Martin's wistful dreams of inspiring love in Sonia lead him to attempt the pseudo-heroic feat of returning to Russia, not for political reasons, but to impress her.
"The book's - certainly very attractive - working title (later discarded
in favor of the pithier Podvig, "gallant feat," "high deed") was
Romaniticheskiy vek, "romantic times," which I had chosen partly
because I had had enough of hearing Western journalists call our era "materialistic,"
"practical," "utilitarian," etc., but, mainly because the purpose of my
novel, my only one with a purpose, lay in stressing the thrill and glamour
that my young expatriate finds in the most ordinary pleasures as well
as in the seemingly meaningless adventures of a lonely life."
Scholarly Criticism of Glory:
Couturier, Maurice. "Glory"
MARY | KING, QUEEN, KNAVE | THE DEFENSE
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