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Oblomov

by Ivan Goncharov

This is a novel of will, or rather a novel studying the lack of will. Oblomov has a beautiful soul. He is capable of the most noble emotions. His intentions are always good. The storms aroused in his soul are genuine. They shake him deeply. He is honest, good-hearted, idealistically inclined. But--he is Oblamov. He is lazy. He is inertia incarnated. From the apparatus of his thoughts and emotions, there are no wires to the mechanism of action. (Abridged version translated from the Russian by C. J. Hogarth.)

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Deborah Swift
When Deborah Swift isn't working on her latest novel, she enjoys exploring the English countryside. It was during one of her nature walks that an "orchid guard" inspired her to write her novel, The Lady's Slipper. As our author of the day, Swift reveals why she was inspired, why she picked the 1660s as a backdrop for her book and what the orchid symbolizes.
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