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CALLAGHAN, Morley. Close to the Sun Again. Toronto : Macmillan of Canada, (1977). First Edition. Pp (6),1-169,(1). 8vo, black cloth, gilt lettering to spine.
Morley Edward Callaghan, CC OOnt FRSC (b. February 22, 1903, Toronto, Ontario - d. August 25, 1990, Toronto, Ontario).
"'Wherever he went in the world, and he had been in all his great corporation's outposts, Ira Groome was soon called 'The Commander'. Not that he ever mentioned his former naval rank, or his great record in the North Atlantic. People simply felt more comfortable with him and themselves calling him Commander, for in spite of thirty years in civilian life, he still carried with him all the war marks of a superior officer.'
To outside eyes, Ira Groome is a success. Yet when his alcoholic wife dies and his son rejects him, Ira Groome changes. He decides to leave Brazil, to come home to Toronto to accept the role of Police Commissioner and to find out -- what? All the time as he moves around the city or goes to the theatre, dinners, or parties with the social set, he seems to be searching for something, for some clue to his life. Finally, in a clinic for rich alcoholics, his mistress provides that clue when she yells at him 'Come back here, you bastard!' The effect on Groome is dramatic; a walled-off part of his mind has been exposed to the harsh light of day, and he is dazzled. . A few hours later, after his car leaves the road at high speed, Ira Groome lies at death's door in a hospital emergency ward.
And here the book's setting changes as we follow his thoughts back more than thirty years and a thousand miles to a corvette during the darkest days of the North Atlantic war. Two days out of Halifax, young Lieutenant Ira Groome's ship picks up three survivors from an earlier convoy: a merchant seaman, a beautiful society girl not long out of college, and a tough, brooding, dangerous man who turns out to be her bodyguard.
During the hazardous crossing, merchant ships are sunk, a U-boat brought to bay — and Ira Groome and the girl fall in love. Standing by the ship's rail, they share the stories of their past lives. He tells her of his love of poetry, and of his experience as a young archaeologist in the jungles of the Yucatan. She describes the gentle world of Smith College, and the fringes of publishing — and also tells of the boxing promoters who will smash a fighter's hands if he steps out of line, and the high-rolling mobsters who will go to great lengths to hunt down a dangerous witness, and his family. He learns, too, about the bizarre tie that binds tne girl and her bodyguard together in a love-hate relationship that proves to be stronger than death.
What happens aboard a raft on the cold Atlantic before Ira Groome's eyes is shocking and unforgettable—and leaves him with questions about the complexity of human emotions that he would rather not face. So, coolly and deliberately, he brings down the shutters of impersonality over his heart, becomes a career officer, a company man, a man ruled by the head, not the heart. Only as he lies on his deathbed does he realize that by taking that decision he was 'committing high treason against himself.'
Love and hate, war and peace, life and death - all of the great themes of literature—are the moving forces in this haunting story. Told in Morley Callaghan's distinctive style—so easy and flowing that it seems to be no style at all—this story of one man's seems life will move everyone who reads it." - from the dj.
Signed and inscribed by Callaghan on the half-title leaf. 40.00
Title: Close to the Sun Again. First Edition in dustjacket, Signed
Publisher: Macmillan of Canada, Toronto, 1977, ISBN:0770515746: 1977
ISBN Number: 0770515746
ISBN Number 13: 9780770515744
Item: 1.00 Item
Seller ID: 95450