The Cornelius Quartet
An Omnibus edition of The Cornelius Tetralogy containing the revised editions of 1979.
Publishing History (UK)
- Boxset, Fontana, 1979, Cover by Bill Sanderson (contains four individual volumes)
- Hardcover, Phoenix House, 855pp., ISBN: 1-897580-55-X, Sept 1993, £18.99
- Trade Paperback, Phoenix House, 855pp., ISBN: 1-897580-50-9, Sept 1993, £14.99
- Paperback, Gollancz, 1056pp., ISBN: 978-0575092402, Aug 2013, £14.99
Publishing History (US)
- Trade Paperback, Four Walls Eight Windows, 855pp., ISBN: 1-56858-183-1, May 2001, $22.00
- "I've always said that the [Cornelius] books are not written to be interpreted. You jump in and enjoy it or not. But if you try to make it linear or find a single 'explanation' in ther sequence, it would be a bit like trying to make sense of the entire world. I suppose it's a bit like the difference between narative painting and impressionist painting."
- "I think it's certainly possible to feel nostalgia for a time you never experienced, especially for events just before and around the time of your own birth. It's part of a human curiosity to understand both the self and its relation to the general culture. I remain fascinated by the thirties, for instance, since I was born in 1939. In my Cornelius novels, which I began to work on consciously by 1970, I drew the line at 1870 and only went back that far. It seemed to me that modern times began about then and the logic and rhetoric of our own times seemed to me to begin around then. By this I mean discussion about immigration, for instance and certain ethical debates -- the Boer War divided the British intelligensia the way Vietnam divided us later -- conscious imperialism -- various forms of humanism... It's an artificial line, but it helped me frame what I was going to write about and how."
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