If we take a look back to ‘The Line-Up‘ post from a whole 7 months ago, this was in fact one of the featured books sitting on my ‘To Read’ shelf at home. Having purchased a lovely copy of Brideshead Revisited upon recommendation, I had been eager to read it for some time when I picked it up a couple of months ago. Not only had I been told that the novel itself was superb, but several people had also spoken highly of the dramatisations. Fortunately, I had not seen the television series nor the film and came to the book with no pre-conceived ideas, judgements and without any idea about the plot and storyline.

IMG_4362‘The Line-Up’ post from back in July.


Having just finished The Great Gatsby (another novel featured in ‘The Line-Up’), a tale of new money and affluence also set in the 1920s, I was ready for the English old money equivalent. I was right in the idea that this novel is completely and utterly English old money. However, the plot goes much deeper than that. The theme of love for example is complicated by marriage and subsequent infidelity,  family and religion. Prosperous Jay Gatsby may throw a good party but the indulgent Oxford days of Charles and Sebastian seem to go one step further. Living off of family allowances, the pair indulge in parties and alcohol, plenty of it. Sebastian’s indulgent lifestyle slowly spirals into a state of depression and alcoholism as a form of escapism, one of the darker sides to the extravagant lifestyles and eccentric personalities explored within the novel.


I’ve already purchased another Evelyn Waugh novel so we shall mark this read as a success. Stay tuned.



  1. I have written an approximately 1,760-word essay concerning my thoughts on Brideshead Revisited, with a concentration on my first thoughts about the book, which is my all-time favorite novel. But would this be too long for you? If it does not exceed your limit, I would be happy to send you the essay, by e-mail or the U.S. mail, for your consideration. Yours truly, David Bittner, Omaha, NE.


  2. I think maybe you mean the essay I wrote, titled, “I Owe it All to Brideshead Or: 2001: A ‘Spacey’ Odyssey.” In this essay I wrote about my mid-life journey to the Catholic Church, citing the two major attractions of the Church for me as being its “aristocratic glamour,” as seen in Brideshead Revisited’s many poignant scenes of Catholic ritual, and the novel’s appeal to my interest in the old literary theme of “going home again.” My essay was published on the poetry and culture blog, “Scarriet,” at the very end of the post entitled, “If Love Should Make Me Greedy and Unkind.” David Bittner


  3. If you want to read “A Personal Note,” by David Bittner, concerning his joining the Catholic Church at age 50, in 2001, just go to “Evelyn Waugh Studies” Vol. 48, No. 2, Fall 2017. Then scroll down to the heading, NEWS, and click on “A Personal Note.” That should bring up the three-page essay, entitled, “I Owe It All to Brideshead.” You might also like to see Bittner’s essay comparing the 1946-47 French translation of Brideshead by Georges Belmont, published by Robert Laffont, as “Retour a Brideshead,” with Waugh’s original work in English.


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