Burmese Days

By George Orwell,

Book cover of Burmese Days

Book description

Honest and evocative, George Orwell's first novel is an examination of the debasing effect of empire on occupied and occupier.

Burmese Days focuses on a handful of Englishmen who meet at the European Club to drink whisky and to alleviate the acute and unspoken loneliness of life in 1920s Burma-where…

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2 authors picked Burmese Days as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

A lifelong hero of mine, George Orwell is best known for his political allegories Animal Farm and 1984, but his first published novel, written after a five-year stint as a policeman in Burma, gave an indication of his direction as a writer, with a vicious swipe at colonial attitudes and manners. The main character, John Flory, is a jaded teak merchant who detests the colonial “lie that we’re here to uplift our Black brothers instead of to rob them”. He has no friends at the local colonial club, is unlucky in love and meets a tragic end—all part of…

George Orwell is best known for his futuristic political visions, searing political satire, and his expose of the deprivation of the English and French labouring classes in the interwar decades. My favourite of his books is Burmese Days, set in 1920s British colonial Burma (now Myanmar) and based on his own time there as an imperial police officer. Its detailed descriptions of the social lives and daily pastimes of Britons in a remote colonial outpost reveal the ways that gender structured colonial race relations. The book’s protagonist, himself critical of other white colonisers, meets his inglorious end because he…

The Secret Order of the Scepter & Gavel

By Nicholas Ponticello,

Book cover of The Secret Order of the Scepter & Gavel

Nicholas Ponticello Author Of The Secret Order of the Scepter & Gavel

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Vanderough University prepares its graduates for life on Mars. Herbert Hoover Palminteri enrolls at VU with the hope of joining the Martian colony in 2044 as a member of its esteemed engineer corps. But then Herbert is tapped to join a notorious secret society: the Order of the Scepter and Gavel. As a new pledge, Herbert has to prove himself in a series of dangerous initiation rites, even if it means risking his life and the lives of his friends.

Many years later, when Herbert thinks the scandals of his youth are finally dead and buried, a murder occurs in the Martian colony, and Herbert starts to suspect it is linked to the secret Order of the Scepter and Gavel of his past.

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