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Author: Nevil Shute
ISBN13: 978-0884113249
Title: Round the Bend
Format: mbr mobi lit txt
ePUB size: 1996 kb
FB2 size: 1550 kb
DJVU size: 1694 kb
Language: English
Category: Humanities
Publisher: Amereon Ltd (June 1, 1965)

Round the Bend by Nevil Shute

Vintage is a registered trademark and Vintage International and colophon are trademarks of Random House, Inc. This is a work of fiction. The chaps fuelling and cleaning down the aircraft let me help them, coiling down a hose or fetching an oil drum for them to stand on; when there was nothing else that wanted doing I went round the enclosures picking up the waste paper that the crowd had left behind and taking it away to burn in a corner of the field.

Round the Bend is a 1951 novel by Nevil Shute. It tells the story of Constantine "Connie" Shaklin, an aircraft engineer who founds a new religion transcending existing religions based on the merit of good work. It deals with racism, including the White Australia policy, and also with the importance of private enterprise.

JAMES ELROY FLECKER MAJOR HEREWARD was adamant that Connie had to leave the Persian Gulf de it pretty clear, too, that if they had any trouble with me they’d kick me out too. They didn’t seem to have a lot of use for any of us, and yet, I think we’d done a useful job while we were there. Perhaps it would have been better if I’d gone into the officers’ mess, as I could have done long before.

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I came into aviation the hard way. I was never in the . and my parents hadn’t got fifteen hundred pounds to spend on pilot training for me at a flying school. My father was, and is, a crane driver at Southampton docks, and I am one of seven children, five boys and two girls. I went to the council school like all the other kids in our street, and then when I left school dad got me a job in a garage out on the Portsmouth Road. I went to Portsmouth on an early bus and I was out at the airport long before the first machines flew in, helping the ground crew to put up the first enclosures round the edges of the aerodrome. The foreman scratched his head when he saw me, but they were always shorthanded so they didn’t turn me off.

Round The Bend (2002). About book: I confess I don't know how Nevil Shute does it. This novel, written about 1951, purports to be the autobiography of an airline entrepreneur after WWII. He starts in England with a single small plane and gradually builds an airfreight empire centered in Bahrain. Perhaps what I like best is that is seems the last kind of book a post-Victorian English Man would have written, especially one born into the upper middle class. He treats the "non-Europeans" like people, and not "wogs".

It's a great story about an ordinary man who goes on an extraordinary adventure. Bulgarian, French, and German rights to the book were sold before publication. Its 5/03 mass market release will tie in with the hardcover release of First Degree. David Rosenfelt writes legal mysteries with the same authority and sense of drama that has ensured the success of Robert B. Parker, Robert Crais, and Harlan Coben. Tuscarawas County Public Library System. Book Club Books ~ TCPL. Angus & Robertson.

Reviews: 7
Of all of his good to excellent works, this remains my favorite. I reread it every few years for the hope I can glean from it. It is a compass I refer to time to time to help me on my journey. I read it first when I was 18, and still love it 40 years later. I give a copy of this book to everyone I love- it means that much to me.
The Post-War Persian Gulf of the 40s makes real the Gulf War geography we have so often heard about, and helps inform our perceptions of the people and events of our own recent past. Evident is not only Shute’s perceptive observations of the motivations of people and his expertise in the field of aviation, but the cognitive dissonance of the protagonist Tom Cutter (and perhaps that of the author himself) as he sheds hid cultural and religious chauvinisms and comes to stop viewing “the other” as people and not wogs (no offense intended as I am a wog myself). If the author displays the zealousness of a recent convert to this idea he can, I hope, be forgiven for a tendency to seem to preach. His journey from what appeared to be a fairly typical set of Victorian prejudices (evident in his early works and some later ones as well) to the ability to accept the validity of non-European views. This is no small enlightenment for a man of his time and upbringing.
This story could have been as easily set in the Australian Outback, and Indian reservation in America or most places in the third world with resources to exploit and people with non-first world cultures. It is a literary smorgasbord- aviation, the Middle East, marital issues (Tom’s wife commits suicide sending him off on his new journey), world politics, friendship, the effects of poorly formed public policies, bureaucracy, intercultural relationships, smuggling, finance, religion, philosophy…. I am reminded of the story of Donald Woods and the evolution of his friendship with Stephen Biko. As an Air Force brat I loved the flying. As an American Indian I appreciated the acceptance of views not those of the “dominant society”. As a widower I appreciated ho he tried to recover from the guilt he felt as a result of his wife’s death. As a person who tries to walk a spiritual walk, I could relate to others who have the same struggle. Tom Cutter loves flying, loves his family, loves his friends and loves the sometimes heartbreaking business he is in. I recommend this book highly. It is one of my two very favorites.
Nevil Shute himself thought this was his best novel. The messiah-figure of this story is Shak Lin, a Western-educated Malayan aircraft mechanic, who begins life as a British boy named Connie Shaklin. His message is the moral imperative of good maintenance of the machines upon which others’ lives depend: "...we are not like that, we engineers. We are men of understanding and of education, on whom is laid responsibility that men may travel in these aeroplanes as safely as if they were sitting by the well in the cool of the evening."

Or, as is quoted within the introduction to the paperback where I first read it: "…Not as a ladder from earth to Heaven, not as a witness to any creed, / But simple service simply given to his own kind in their common need… —Rudyard Kipling, "The Sons of Martha"

The religious movement that grows up around this inoffensive and admirable dictum eventually leads to Shaklin’s martyrdom—and the quiet growth of a new religion. The story shows the way a religious meme grows; in seemingly-barren soil, fertilized by the religions that precede it—and watered by the blood of martyrs.

The narrator has the last word: "I still think Connie was a human man, a very, very good one—but a man. I have been wrong in my judgments many times before; if now I am ignorant and blind, I’m sorry, but it’s no new thing. If that should be the case though, it means that I have had great privileges in my life, perhaps more so than any man alive today. Because it means that on the fields and farms of England, on the airstrips of the desert and the jungle, in the hangars of the Persian Gulf and on the tarmacs of the southern islands, I have walked and talked with God."
It's so easy
The three-star rating reflects the poor Kindle conversion of this five-star book. This is one of my favorite Shute books, which I have enjoyed reading several times over the last 50 years. The Kindle edition is full of typos that were generated during the conversion. For instance, "corner" appears repeatedly as "comer" - visually almost the same, but a significant difference. Other cases require the reader to guess the correct word, as the printed one is gibberish. This book is peppered with the names of Middle East locations, which seem to be printed correctly, but an error would go undetected by most readers (including me).
Notwithstanding the faults in this edition, I am glad this great story is available on Kindle.
I read many of Shute's novels when in High School but somehow missed this one. His style is so "gentle" and the subject matter(early aircraft business in the middle east) is interesting. But the philosophical genius of the book is it's study of the power of peaceful worship of God coupled to a work ethic. If this sounds strange, it is, at least to me. A wonderful surprise in an otherwise very well written history of early aircraft business development. A sneaky very good read.
I only recently me aware of Nevil Shute and have only read three of his books but each one has been really enjoyable and as much a page turner as many action novels.

The title of this book suggests something to do with plumbing or mental disorder but it is anything but. It is a story of one man in particular through not having special inherited attributes convey a message of goodness and honesty to many people of many different nationalities and religions and through his positive attitude and open mindedness leads others to consider there own lifestyle .

For me a very good book and even led me to be more relaxed and considerate in my life and have to admit since reading this believe I have become a better more considerate person. I finished this book about 4 weeks ago and yet recall parts of it every day and consider various aspects. Not a holy roller book by any means but a book for people to consider their own lifestyle and that of others