Bulwer-Lytton’s The New Timon

London Street

 

Another great poetry must read includes Bulwer-Lytton‘s The New Timon.

Narrated in excellent verse, Bulwer-Lytton tells the story of the live, loves and struggles of the half-caste orphan Morvale in nineteenth century London.

Morvale is rich – but grown bitter against the racist English elite and coldly cynical towards the world in general. His heart is softened only towards his half-sister – Calantha, whom he maintains in his own house; and the poor – for he himself had known extreme poverty in his youth.

Morvale fosters a poor orphaned street-girl named Lucy – bringing her into his home and introducing her as a female companion for his sister. But all is not as it first appears: Lucy is no ordinary poor orphaned-girl: she quickly proves to be both well educated and intelligent. As time unfolds, – Lucy is revealed to possess a previously unsuspected and altogether surprising connection to her new protectors: unknown by all concerned and certainly unsuspected by herself.

  • Lucy was raised by her mother, Mary. But who is her father? Would Lucy really wish to even know his identity: seeing he abandoned the family before her birth?
  • Why does Calantha faint at every mention of the name of Morvale’s good friend, Lord Arden?
  • How do the sins of Lord Arden’s youth – revealed in confidence to Morvale himself – tie himself, Morvale, Calantha, and even Lucy into an inextricable web of lies, deceit, and blood-debt?

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