The narrative shifts focus between its heroine and the peripheral characters with their chorus of viewpoints. For Rachel, the voyage becomes a journey toward intellectual and emotional maturity. Arriving in Santa Marina, a village on the South American coast, Rachel is introduced to a group of English expatriates, among them the sensitive young Terence Hewet, an aspiring writer with whom she falls into a doomed romance.
"[An] inspired book whose scene is a South Americana not found on any map, reached by a boat which would not float on any sea, an Americana whose spiritual boundaries touch Xanadu and Atlantis." (E.M. Forster)
"For all its tragic interest, The Voyage Out is not low-keyed; it even has a slight buoyancy of tone, as if clear perception itself brought a continual zest to its writer. Woolf has the diversity of power which makes the great writer of narrative." (New Republic)
What members say
- John S.
Tough to get through this one
I'm a big fan of the narrator (Woolf not so much), but it was a chore getting through this one.
- Welsh Mafia
Mal de Mer
This is a great presentations of one of the classics. With Miss Woolf second only to Jane Austen in the density of coverage in popular culture it's well worth a visit and a natural starting point as the first novel in the Woolf ouvre.
However, as with her predecessor, The Voyage Out serves principally to highlight what a marvellous achievement Mrs Dalloway was - coming some ten years later when her skills had been honed on Jacob's Room.
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