Book summary: The Book and the Brotherhood

1987 BY IRIS MURDOCH

Many years ago Gerard Hernshaw and his friends “commissioned” one of their number to write a political book.

Time passes and opinions change. “Why should we go on supporting a book which we detest?” Rose Curtland asks. “The brotherhood of Western intellectuals versus the book of history,” Jenkin Riderhood suggests. The theft of a wife further embroils the situation. Moral indignation must be separated from political disagreement.

Tamar Hernshaw has a different trouble and a terrible secret. Can one die of shame? In another quarter a suicide pact seems the solution. Duncan Cambus thinks that since it is a tragedy, someone must die. Someone dies. Rose, who has gone on loving without hope, at least deserves a reward.

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