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Old 03-03-2009, 09:59 AM   #1
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Hichens, Robert Smythe: A Spirit in Prison Series. V1. 3 Mar 2009

Robert Smythe Hichens (November 14, 1864 – July 20, 1950) was an English journalist and novelist.
Born in Speldhurst in Kent, he was educated at Clifton College, the Royal College of Music, and the London School of Journalism.
He wrote lyrics for music, stories, and collaborated in successful plays. He is best remembered now, perhaps, for his satire on Oscar Wilde, The Green Carnation (1894), his novels that were made into films — The Garden of Allah (pub. 1904) and The Paradine Case (pub. 1933) — and the story "How Love Came to Professor Guildea", which has been frequently anthologized. His novel "Felix" (1902) is an early fictional treatment of hypodermic morphine addiction.
Hichens' classic novel The Green Carnation has been republished as a hardcover volume in 2006.



The Call of the Blood

On a dreary afternoon of November, when London was closely wrapped in a yellow fog, Hermione Lester was sitting by the fire in her house in Eaton Place reading a bundle of letters, which she had just taken out of her writing-table drawer. She was expecting a visit from the writer of the letters, Emile Artois, who had wired to her on the previous day that he was coming over from Paris by the night train and boat.

A Spirit in Prison

Somewhere, not far off on the still sea that held the tiny islet in a warm embrace, a boy's voice was singing "Napoli Bella."
Vere heard the song as she sat in the sun with her face set towards Nisida and the distant peak of Ischia; and instinctively she shifted her position, and turned her head, looking towards the calm and untroubled water that stretched between her and Naples. For the voice that sang of the beautiful city was coming towards her from the beautiful city, hymning the siren it had left perhaps but two hours ago.
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