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R.C. Sherriff Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Journey's End (1930)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Fortnight in September (1931)Description / Buy at Amazon
Green Gates (1936)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Hopkins Manuscript (1939)Description / Buy at Amazon
Chedworth (1944)Description / Buy at Amazon
Another Year (1948)Description / Buy at Amazon
King John's Treasure (1954)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Wells of St Mary's (1962)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Siege of Swayne Castle (1973)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Plays

Journey's End (1929)Description / Buy at Amazon
Badger's Green (1930)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Invisible Man (1933)Description / Buy at Amazon
Two Hearts Doubled (1934)Description / Buy at Amazon
St. Helena (1935)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Road Back (1937)Description / Buy at Amazon
Miss Mabel (1948)Description / Buy at Amazon
Home at Seven (1950)Description / Buy at Amazon
The White Carnation (1953)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Long Sunset (1956)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Telescope (1957)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Shred of Evidence (1961)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

No Leading Lady (1968)Description / Buy at Amazon

R.C Sherriff was an English author popularly known for his play Journey’s End. He was famous for his play Journey’s End, based on his experiences as an army officer during World War 1.

He was nominated for an Academy Award for being the best adapted screenplay by and British film and television arts academy. In 1955, his screenplays The Night My Number Came Up, and The Dam Busters were nominated for Best British Screenplay BAFTA awards. Robert died on November, 1975

During the pandemic in the spring of 2020, The Guardian asked several renowned authors to suggest uplifting books. Among these authors were Hilary Mantel, Marlon James, and Kazuo Ishiguro. Ishiguro recommended The Fortnight in September, a novel from 1931 that he found life-affirming, delicate, and magical.

R.C. Sherriff’s The Fortnight in September is a novel you should consider if you’re in the mood for a heartwarming, gentle story. The book beautifully captures the simple yet profound joys of a family vacation to the English seaside.

The novel invites readers into the world of a family enjoying their annual holiday. The narrative doesn’t rely on grand events or dramatic twists. Instead, it focuses on the small, everyday moments that make life unique. This understated approach to storytelling reflects a deeper insight into life’s simple pleasures. It’s a reminder of the magic in ordinary experiences, making The Fortnight in September a timeless piece that resonates with the beauty of simplicity and the joy of family bonds.

In The Fortnight in September, an exciting twist occurs when the Stevens family, somewhat unsure of themselves, encounters a man who happens to be a client at Mr. Stevens’ workplace. This man invites them to his house for tea. While this invitation adds a sense of adventure to their holiday, a part of the family longs for their usual, familiar routine.

The novel stands out for its writing style. This one employs a delicate touch, unlike many books that create an atmosphere through lavish and dense prose. The descriptions are clear and thorough, yet a gentleness in the writing adds to the book’s charm.

The Stevens find comfort in creating a routine even when they are away from home. Their holiday is less about escaping their everyday life and more about embracing this annual two-week period as an integral part of their existence. It’s a tradition that defines them and their way of life.

What you will love the most about The Fortnight in September is how R.C. Sherriff delves into the inner worlds of each family member. He skillfully uncovers their private yearnings and regrets, revealing their wishes for different aspects of their lives. This exploration adds depth to the characters, making them relatable and real. The novel is a gentle reflection on family life, routine, and the small yet significant moments that shape our lives.

Each member of the Stevens family carries their desires and struggles. Mary, one of the children, yearns for genuine friendship. Her brother, Dick, dreams of a more fulfilling career, hoping to move beyond his current job at a wholesale stationery company. Their father, meanwhile, has professional aspirations of his own. He is eyeing the Secretary’s position at his company, waiting for the current holder to retire.

Mrs. Stevens, the mother, is depicted as the most melancholic figure in the family. Her world is remarkably small, confined mostly to their home in Dulwich, London. Despite living in a bustling city, her knowledge of London and its surrounding areas is minimal. To her, these places are just distant lights across the railway line. Unlike the rest of her family, Mrs. Stevens doesn’t share the same enthusiasm for their annual holiday. Much like the world beyond her doorstep, the sea fills her with fear.

Each character’s unique perspective adds layers to the story. Mary and Dick’s aspirations reflect a longing for change and growth, while their father’s ambitions show his dedication to his career. Mrs. Stevens’ apprehension and limited worldview contrast with the rest of her family’s outlook. Their hopes, fears, and dreams vividly represent each family’s challenges, even as they share everyday experiences like their annual seaside vacation.

The Fortnight in September paints a touching picture of family life, tinged with sadness. However, it’s not a sad story. This family enjoys each other’s company and cherishes their small, daily rituals. As the story unfolds, we see how their time in Bognor shifts their perspectives and lives. These changes are not dramatic, but they’re significant enough to hint at growth, yet not so drastic as to alter their tradition of returning to Bognor the following year.

Journey’s End is a World War One play, now a staple in the literary world. It vividly portrays the varied reactions of soldiers to the brutalities of war. Captain Stanhope and his officers, stationed in a frontline dugout, brace for an imminent attack. Notably, this play was among Laurence Olivier’s early roles, paving the way for his celebrated acting career.

In the play, each man copes with the war’s traumas differently. Sheriff explores these coping mechanisms, ranging from Trotter’s compulsive eating to Stanhope’s turn to alcoholism. The play highlights their bravery and the heavy price they pay for it.
The German army is gearing up for a major offensive as the play opens. The British officers, with strict orders not to retreat, each face the looming fear and tension in their unique ways. Sheriff skillfully depicts these officers at various stages of their wartime experience, from the disillusioned to the naive newcomer Raleigh, who still romanticizes war.

R.C. Sherriff’s portrayal of the soldiers’ struggles is deeply authentic, likely drawing from his frontline experiences in World War One. This personal insight lends a sensitive and genuine quality to Journey’s End, enhancing its impact and authenticity.
Throughout the play, Sheriff gradually builds suspense with the impending threat of attack. He delves deep into the characters, creating a sense of dread interspersed with dark humor and interpersonal conflicts. While the pace might seem slow to some, it adds to the play’s realism, revealing the various defense mechanisms of the characters.

Journey’s End stands out for its excellent dialogue, quickly forging a strong bond between the audience and the characters. The narrative builds to a powerful, emotional climax, making the play an impactful and unforgettable theatrical experience.

Book Series In Order » Authors » R.C. Sherriff

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