Hearing Secret Harmonies

  • Title: Hearing Secret Harmonies
  • Author: Anthony Powell
  • ISBN: 9780099472537
  • Page: 132
  • Format: Paperback
  • Hearing Secret Harmonies The final novel in Anthony Powell s brilliant twelve novel sequence A Dance to the Music of Time Discover the extraordinary life of Anthony Powell captured by acclaimed biographer Hilary Spurling in
    The final novel in Anthony Powell s brilliant twelve novel sequence, A Dance to the Music of Time.Discover the extraordinary life of Anthony Powell captured by acclaimed biographer Hilary Spurling in Anthony Powell Dancing to the Music of Time available now in hardback and ebook from Hamish Hamilton.

    • Unlimited [Fantasy Book] ☆ Hearing Secret Harmonies - by Anthony Powell ✓
      132 Anthony Powell
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      Posted by:Anthony Powell
      Published :2020-04-27T01:39:52+00:00

    About Anthony Powell


    1. Anthony Dymoke Powel CH, CBE was an English novelist best known for his twelve volume work A Dance to the Music of Time, published between 1951 and 1975.Powell s major work has remained in print continuously and has been the subject of TV and radio dramatisations In 2008, The Times newspaper named Powell among their list of The 50 greatest British writers since 1945.


    570 Comments


    1. Such a long journey! We first met Nick Jenkins in school, as a teenager with a keen interest in the affairs of others and a rather reclusive, shy temperament. Now he is in his late sixties, and hopefully he has some wisdom to impart from all the events he witnessed, from all the people he has met and from all the books he has read or written. Two compensations for growing old are worth putting on record as the condition asserts itself. The first is a vantage point gained for acquiring embellishm [...]

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    2. Certain books are age specific: not in a "Suitable for ages 7 and up" way; they just have to be read at the right time in life to truly resonate. Catcher in the Rye has, I think, to be read in one's adolesence; any older and the angst would just grate. On the other hand, I would say that Powell's A Dance to the Music of Time can't be read any younger than one's middle years. I don't think the way it captures so perfectly the unexpectedness of life's trajectories would make any sense to anyone yo [...]

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    3. It is with a great sense of accomplishment that I finish this twelfth volume in Powell ' s "A Dance to the Music of Time." I had wanted to read this for many years, but was daunted by the sheer scope of reading over 3000 pages. Last year I was invited to join a small group reading and discussing one volume per month, which seemed to be possible. It has been a wonderful experience; I have looked forward to each month's installment, the discussion of art, music, literature, and all the characters [...]

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    4. Two compensations for growing old are worth putting on record as the condition asserts itself. The first is a vantage point gained for acquiring embellishments to narratives that have been unfolding for years beside one’s own, trimmings that can even appear to supply the conclusion of a given story, though finality is never certain, a dimension always possible to add. The other mild advantage endorses keener perception for the authenticities of mythology, not only of the traditional sort, but [...]

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    5. It's curious to consider that when Anthony Powell wrote Hearing Secret Harmonies the final novel in the twelve-novel series “A Dance to the Music of Time”, and despite the series starting in the early twentieth century, that it was almost contemporaneous, being published in 1975, and taking place in the late 1960s and early 1970s, and makes references to hippies, the permissive society, Vietnam, and Enoch Powell. The final two volumes, Temporary Kings and Hearing Secret Harmonies, each movin [...]

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    6. Obviously I'm going to chew on this last book for a bit and try and roll the whole thing up. Powell reminds me of one of those extreme runners. Those masochists who seem to enjoy running 50, 100, or more miles. The amazing things about writing 12 novels that are together nearly 3000 pages and written over 24 years (1951 - 1971), is how uniform these books are. I'm not saying uniform in a boring way. I'm just saying there isn't a real weak link in them. They are beautifully constructed. I think o [...]

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    7. “We are often told we must establish with certainty the values of the society in which we live. That is a right and proper ambition, one to be laid down without reticence as to yea or nay. Let me say at once what I stand for myself. I stand for the dictatorship of free men, and the catalysis of social, physical and spiritual revolution. I claim the right to do so in the name of contemporary counterculture…”The riotous sixties are around and about… a general shift in mass consciousness, e [...]

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    8. "In my beginning is my end."A brilliant final act in Powell's Dance. This last volume charts the decline and fall of Kenneth Widmerpool and brings this great work to a very satisfactory end. Wonderful stuff.

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    9. is the final novel in Anthony Powell's twelve-volume masterpiece, A Dance to the Music of Time. It was published in 1975 twenty-four years after the first book, A Question of Upbringing appeared in 1951.Completing his meditation upon the themes of time and will, the author recounts the narrative in the voice of a convincingly middle-aged Jenkins. (In the television adaptation of the novels an older actor was chosen to play Nick in the final part.)4* A Question of Upbringing (A Dance to the Music [...]

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    10. Hearing Secrets Harmonies by Anthony PowellSublime…you can almost Hear the Secret Harmonies…Alas, this is the last of twelve volumes in the magnificent series A Dance to the Music of Time by the divine Anthony Powell- The English Proust- this is how he was regarded by criticsIndeed, his chef d’oeuvre compares well with Remembrance of Things Past, probably the best novel ever written.We have said goodbye to a number of main characters in the eleven previous volumes, starting with Charles St [...]

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    11. This is the final novel in Anthony Powell’s twelve novel series, “A Dance to the Music of Time,” all narrated by the writer Nick Jenkins, now in his fifties and sixties, the novel opening with a chapter devoted to Nick and his wife Isobel hosting their niece Fiona and her three companions who are part of an apparent religious cult or commune, by the second chapter moving into Nick’s reflections about writing and narrative, considering specifically Poussin’s famous painting that lends i [...]

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    12. Whew! 12 novels, approximately 3,000 pages worth of reading behind me. I want to spend more time in Powell’s A Dance to the Music of Time universe. I will miss Hugh Moreland, Uncle Giles, X. Trapnel, Charles Stringham, Peter Templer, even asshat Kenneth Widmerpool. (I’ll miss neither Pamela Flitton nor Scorpio Murtlock, though I don’t expect I’ll forget them.) Only one hour removed from turning the last page, and I’m already making plans for a reread.Not surprisingly, Narrator Nick Jen [...]

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    13. And so it ends; the final volume in Powell’s A Dance to the Music of Time is complete exactly 365 days after I started it. Was it worth it. Yes, I’d say so. Did I love it. No, not really.The book ends with some quite esoteric encounters with what can only be described as a cult. A collection of vagabond hippies have found inspiration in a collection of pagan rituals based on the life and work of the long deceased Dr Trelawney. Somewhat surprisingly, this cult enfolds one of the key character [...]

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    14. And thus, it's over. It took me quite some time to work may way through Dance, as I read other books between it, but the commitment was worth it. I started it with no realization of what I was getting into, it was a mystery book that sprang up on the nook account I shared with my mom. It was a whim, really. I just needed something new to read and it was there. At the first chapter I thought there was no way I would male it through the first book, let alone the last one, but how wrong I was. It s [...]

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    15. This concludes Powell's 12-novel cycle, 'A Dance to the Music of Time.' In short, it is one of the towering achievements in literature, an astonishing admixture of history and memoir in fictional form. And, Kenneth Widmerpool, the cycle's antagonist, is one of the greatest creations in fiction. Also I must give a shout-out to Hilary Spurling's 'Invitation to the Dance: A Handbook to A Dance to the Music of Time,' an indispensable guide. My thanks for my friend Tess Parker for steering me to it.

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    16. Wrapping up a twelve book series that spans a half a century is no mean feat, especially a series whose various plots are sprawling and inclusive of hundreds of named characters, and yet Anthony Powell provides a satisfying and thoughtful ending to A Dance to the Music of Time with his final volume, Hearing Secret Harmonies. The last three books of the series have been the most powerful and beautifully written, which only makes sense given that Powell’s experience as a writer, his familiarity [...]

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    17. And so the 12 novel cycle, named after Poussin's painting "A Dance To The Music of Time" and written and published over a 24 year period (1951-75), comes to an end. The Empire has fallen, Britain is somewhere around the time of the 3 Day Week in 1973, values seem to have been trampled on and debased. Widmerpool is unsurprisingly the main focus of this last novel, although in a rather gaudy, unconvincing way, seeing as he gets mixed up in a rather cartoonish cult. While this can serve to resonate [...]

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    18. 3 1/2 stars (for the whole series)The grand finale to the rather epic 12 book series and it's suitably peculiar. I'm not particularly up with the subtle changes between the years but even I can pick out the bohemianish feel of the times now, mostly personified in the character of Scorpio Murtlock, a sexually charismatic individual who sets up his own cult and dominates his followers in very creepy ways. Almost inevitably his path crosses with Widmerpool and, drama. Of the Anthony Powell variety [...]

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    19. I was unable to find how to add a review for the whole series of A Dance to the Music of Time, so I attached it to the first volume and repeat it here because of the reference to this volume: It's quite hard to summarize a reader's experience with a twelve-volume novel, even though I have to admit that I love such gigantic, epic attempts. Powell's world isn't one that fascinates me -upper class and bohemia- and most situations and actions are either insignificant or limited in scope (even with r [...]

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    20. Powell comes on with full force in 'Hearing Secret Harmonies,' letting the reader run into nearly all the characters from the twelve novels of 'Dance' who are still alive, while introducing strong new ones representing the youth movement of the 70s. The nefarious Scorpio Murtlock, leader of a wiccan and satanic cult stands out. Just as 'A Dance to the Music of Time' opens with the indelible image of Widmerpool, clumsy, overbearing, yet a force of life that can't be stopped, trudging up a road, i [...]

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    21. In comes the new generation, and they're every bit as messed up as the first. While they play a part with their stink bombs, sex cults, manslaughter and other shenanigans, this is still primarily the story of the generation soon to pass away. Or perhaps it's time to face the fact that this series has always been primarily about Kenneth Widmerpool.This is a sad, strange thing to realize. Widmerpool is intensely unsympathetic. He's absurd, pathetic, miserable, confused, power-hungry, unfocused, an [...]

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    22. With HEARING SECRET HARMONIES we reach the end of Anthony Powell's 12-novel series "A Dance to the Music of Time", which has followed narrator Nicholas Jenkins and his social circle for over five decades. As the novel opens, we are in 1968 after a gap of several years since the previous book. Jenkins and his wife host a caravan of hippies on their rural property. Widmerpool, whom Jenkins hasn't seen for a long while, returns and is caught up in the counterculture. Ultimately this leads to Widmer [...]

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    23. Project Powell ends off with a whimper. It took me awhile to get through this last volume in the "Dance to the Music of Time" series. Now that I've read all twelve, I think I can make some sweeping generalizations about the series.Although the first book implies that the series is about four people, basically it is just about two: Nicholas Jenkins, the narrator, who is a rough stand in for the author himself; and Kenneth Widmerpool, the man who rises above his station and falls off the ladder. I [...]

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    24. How does one go about writing a review for a book one has read 57 times. The whole sequence: A Dance to the Music of Time, all 12 volumes, 57 times. Obviously, I enjoy the novel. Recently I read a fellow reviewer suggesting that one really needs to be middle-aged before turning to Powell in order to enjoy the book. That was not my experience. I was introduced to Powell's novel sequence at 20 and I have read it at least once a year every year since. In the beginning, I found myself drawn to Nic [...]

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    25. In keeping with Powell's style, this isn't the typical end to a long series. He has maintained a diligent, dreamlike tone throughout the run of his twelve novels and that doesn't cease here. Indeed, man appears forever the wanderer in this final instalment. Some fall of the cliff in this search and others manage to find a suitable place to set up camp. What I liked about how Powell handled his characters is that he doesn't seem to be making strict moral judgements of their choices. Rather, he ac [...]

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    26. Originally published on my blog here in May 2000.The final part of A Dance to the Music of Time concentrates on what has been an occasional theme until now, esoteric religion, as several characters become involved in what would probably today be described as a New Age cult. Most of the remaining long running characters (including the narrator, Nick Jenkins) are now in their sixties or seventies, and the title refers to both these elements - it is part of a quotation about being affected by mysti [...]

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    27. This book brings Anthony Powell's majestic twelve volume sequence, 'A Dance to the Music of Time' to a triumphant close.The sequence is clearly largely autobiographical, with narrator Nick Jenkins's life closely mirroring Powell's own, though, once again, despite the first person narration we learn precious little about the writer. His observations of his friends and acquaintances remain as acute and diverting as ever, though Jenkins himself remains an enigma.Kenneth (now Lord) Widmerpool is as [...]

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    28. “Two compensations for growing old are worth putting on record as the condition asserts itself. The first is a vantage point gained for acquiring embellishments to narratives that have been unfolding for years beside one’s own, trimmings that can even appear to supply the conclusion of a given story, though finality is never certain, a dimension always possible to add. The other mild advantage endorses a keener perception for the authenticities of mythology, not only of the traditional sort, [...]

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    29. The final book of the series A Dance To the Music of Time takes the reader to the winter years of Jenkins life, around the mid to late 1960s.Continuing with its focus on the lives of characters connected through profession, family and social circles, we see the next generation emerging into adulthood and the final demise of some familiar characters.The book maintains an association with the English upper middle classes and the arts, particularly literature, painting. music and academic endeavour [...]

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    30. What a marvellous trip this has been! Powell's 12-novel A Dance to the Music of Time series has been one of the most interesting reading experiences I've encountered.The books take the reader from the early years of the 20th Century through the 1970's. Through the narrator's eyes, we are part of a world morphing from debutante dinners and country house weekends through the Second World War and on to the hippy cults of the 70's.Many of the characters are introduced in Book 1 and float in and out [...]

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