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The Card

a Story of Adventure in the Five Towns

Cover image for


Author: Arnold Bennett
Published: 1911
Language: English
Wordcount: 75,694 / 225 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 73.4
LoC Category: PR
Series: Five Towns
Downloads: 1,982
Added to site: 2005.11.29 11689

e bedroom at the back of the cottage in Brougham Street, and it was of a complex nature. Three weeks ago he had innocently thought that you had only to order a dress-suit and there you were! He now knew that a dress-suit is merely the beginning of anxiety. Shirt! Collar! Tie! Studs! Cuff-links! Gloves! Handkerchief! (He was very glad to learn authoritatively from Shillitoe that handkerchiefs were no longer worn in the waistcoat opening, and that men who so wore them were barbarians and the truth was not in them. Thus, an everyday handkerchief would do.) Boots!... Boots were the rock on which he had struck. Shillitoe, in addition to being a tailor was a hosier, but by some flaw in the scheme of the universe hosiers do not sell boots. Except boots, Denry could get all he needed on credit; boots he could not get on credit, and he could not pay cash for them. Eventually he decided that his church boots must be dazzled up to the level of this great secular occasion. The pity was that he forgot--not that he was of

Reader Reviews

Average Rating of 4.5 from 2 reviews: *****
Henry L. Ratliff

Plot bullets

  • Follow Edward Henry Machin's (Denry) rise in the 'Five Towns'.

  • Denry is unique, as the Five Towns find out.

  • Denry is not afraid to take a chance.

  • Denry is a promoter. He promotes himself.

  • His antics give him the name, 'The card' (the character).

  • From the book: A little group of councillors were discussing Denry. "What a card!" said one, laughing joyously. "He's a rare 'un, no mistake." "Of course, this'll make him more popular than ever," said another. "We've never had a man to touch him for that." "And yet," demanded Councillor Barlow, "what's he done? Has he ever done a day's work in his life? What great cause is he identified with?" "He's identified," said the speaker, "with the great cause of cheering us all up."

There is a 1952 movie version 'The Card' or renamed 'The Promoter'.


Another very good book by an old "master." The tale of a young man in a time much different than ours with the ambition to become all that he can be. Very interesting.



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