The Comedians (1966) by Graham Greene

I’ve always wanted to read more Graham Greene. So far ahead of his time that even today his books seem contemporary.

Set in Haiti under the rule of François “Papa Doc” Duvalier and his secret police, the Tonton Macoute, the novel explores the political suppression and terrorism through the figure of an English hotel owner, Brown. …

The book starts on a ship bound for Port-au-Prince.

Three men meet: Brown, Smith and Jones.

That’s very Graham Greene.

My favourite character is Mr. Smith, a US Presidential candidate who ran on the vegetarian ticket in the American election of 1948. He and Mrs. Smith plan to build and operate a vegetarian centre in Haiti.

Of course impoverished Haitians at the time could not afford to eat meat or fish.

That’s very Graham Greene, too. 🙂

The naiveté of generous Americans.

Needless to say, the dictator Papa Doc was not happy when the book was published. His Foreign Affairs office called Greene  “A liar, a cretin, a stool-pigeon… unbalanced, sadistic, perverted… a perfect ignoramus …

Unfortunately I don’t feel The Comedians is one of his best books. My favourite, so far, is The Power and the Glory.



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