Wow! This book is just amazing! I thought one thing was true, and the exact opposite was the actual truth. This book made me think about society and judgment in a new way. Of course, there were also some very funny scenes with the detectives, but I shall say no more for fear of spoilers. I would recommend this book VERY highly for anyone who is looking for a thoughtful and thought-provoking story.
Not so much a nightmare as a pipe dream. The Man Who Was Thursday has some of the wit and 19th/early 20th century daring-do I have a weakness for. And, admittedly, anarchism was a legitimate fear at the time -- although given the year it was published (1908), it would have been more relevant to fear not future disorder, but present order. Chesterton's anarchists are a gallery of English conservative (to be fair, most of the population's) bugbears: the intellectual, the Jew, the scientist, the foreigner, the uppity working class man, (if I read him correctly) the homosexual, and above all, the atheist. More importantly, and what i would have thought was obvious at the time, Chesterton tries to have it both ways -- the anarchists are ruthless, well organized, and dangerous, AND amazingly stupid and credulous. If you want more story and less propaganda, try Joseph Conrad, Erskine Childers, or John Buchan.
The snark in this book alone is worth the price of admission. Deadpan delivery, creative Edwardian insults and/or directives. It's great fun to read even if you don't particularly like the tale, though the tale itself is great fun.
A poet meets an anarchist in a park, the poet says the anarchist isn't a real anarchist and is then taken to an underground council of anarchists on the promise that the poet won't tell the police. After eliciting a similar promise from the anarchist, the poet reveals that he is actually a policeman and then proceeds to get himself elected to the council and inherits the title of "Thursday" - all of the council members are called by a day of the week and are led by Sunday.
The whole book is also strangely applicable today and the twist here may not surprise you but it will certainly remind you of a few things you may have read in the news over the past few years.
If you're into espionage, police fiction, philosophy (specifically 'philosopher policemen') you'll love this. It's a quick read so it'll be over before you know if but you'll still be thinking about it long afterwards.
a good and funny look at how the times aren't really changing.
During July 2012, read & discuss this book online as part of Mystery Summer: http://bit.ly/mysterysummer
claraep22 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over
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