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Bremen, 1928. The Greek Islands, 1932. London, 1938. California, 1940. Four portraits, four settings, four narrators all named Christopher Isherwood. Here are the postcards home from a spiritual tourist looking for a new mode of life as well as a new place to live while Europe, and then the world, moves relentlessly toward war. Which of the guides he encounters can lead him to a better future? The businessman, the utopian, the guru, the geisha?
Published in 1962, Down There on a Visit is based on material from a proposed epic that would also have incorporated The Berlin Stories. It is now widely regarded as the most accomplished of Isherwood’s novels.
“Stunning. I can think of no better word.”—Dorothy Parker, Esquire
“This is probably Isherwood’s best novel. It offers the sheer pleasure of writing completely personal and yet completely controlled, radiant with observation, never wasting a word, funny and sympathetic.”—Stephen Spender, The New Republic
“This excellent novel . . . may be the best Christopher Isherwood has written . . . A deeply intelligent and quietly compelling story.”—Gerald Sykes, The New York Times
“This is the best of Mr. Isherwood’s novels.”—Cyril Connolly, The Times (London)
Christopher Isherwood (1904–1986) was born outside Manchester, England. He lived in
Berlin from 1929 to 1933 and emigrated from Europe to the United States in 1939. A major figure in twentieth-century fiction and the gay rights movement, he wrote more than twenty books.