Maugham and Me

I burned through three chapters of The Summing Up, which isn’t hard given how short Maugham writes his chapters. I’m nowhere near as exasperated with the book as I’d been before I forgot it at work and was away from it for a couple days. Maybe it’s just because the book is winding down; I think I’ve got about a quarter left. I’m starting to think about whether or not I’d recommend it. I don’t think I would. Possibly to a biographer looking for the occasional citation, but I can’t imagine there isn’t better material out there. I had been expecting The Summing Up to be some profound self-examination—I still remember my best friend describing it, saying Maugham didn’t like himself (or his writing), but if Maugham does get to that conclusion… well, he’ll contrive his way there because whatever impulse he started the book with is long gone. Needed a better editor. Or maybe my friend was talking about Mr. Maugham Himself, which is from 1954 (and not on the list for Summing-Up so far but I’ve got another ten months so who knows).

Scroll to Top