Now I'm reading Victory- and finding that little of this is true- or not true any longer. Victory is an easy read, a page turner. There's a man on an island and he's got a girl with him and his enemy has sent these three colourful, evil dudes to hassle him. It's got "movie starring Bogart and Bacall" written all over it. The writing is muscular and witty (I don't remember ever laughing at Conrad before) - and it keeps you on your toes with a lot of jumping around in time and place of the kind Conrad pioneered with his (one-time) big buddy Ford Madox Ford. Actually it's Ford that directed me back to Conrad. If I loved The Good Soldier and Parade's End- and I did- then I felt I should give him one more try.
So once I've finished Victory I'm going to work my way through all those other books I half admired, half-resented. I thnk I may now- finally- be old enough to love them.