by Powys, John Cowper
'Along with "Wolf Solent", "A Glastonbury Romance" and "Maiden Castle", this modern classic, originally published in 1934, forms the quartet that 'are just about the only novels produced by an English writer that can fairly be compared with the fictions of Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky" - George Steiner, "The New Yorker'. Drawing on his vivid childhood memories of the seaside town of Weymouth, Powys tells the story of Jobber Skald - a large, somewhat brutish man, obsessed with the urge to kill the local magnate of the town because of the man's contempt for the workers of the local quarry - and his redeeming love for Perdita Wane, a young girl from the Channel Islands. "Weymouth Sands" boasts a striking collection of human oddities, including a famous clown and his mad brother, a naive Latin teacher, a young philosopher, and an abortionist. Against the mysterious and haunting background of the sea, the sands, and the stones of Dorset coast, Powys weaves together his characters' ever-fascinating patterns of behaviour into an epic tale which depicts the power of Eros, the inscrutability of the universe, and the nature of madness, while highlightling Powys' deep sympathy for the variety, eccentricity, and essential loneliness of human beings.