A pleasing - if slight - tale. This is the fourth book I have read by [a:W. Somerset Maugham|4176632|W. Somerset Maugham|http://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1281475888p2/4176632.jpg], and follows [b:Of Human Bondage|31548|Of Human Bondage|W. Somerset Maugham|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1347260157s/31548.jpg|2547187], [b:Ashenden|887797|Ashenden|W. Somerset Maugham|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1320419387s/887797.jpg|552471] and [b:Christmas Holiday|1077367|Christmas Holiday|W. Somerset Maugham|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1320463576s/1077367.jpg|1823662] which were all excellent. I am now intent on reading all his works.
This is a long short story, or a short novel, and I read it in less than a day, and really enjoyed it.
The other books I have read by [a:W. Somerset Maugham|4176632|W. Somerset Maugham|http://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1281475888p2/4176632.jpg] were, to one degree or another, autobiographical. I doubt this contains any biography - although the location (Florence and the surrounding countryside) are doubtless drawn from first-hand experience.
The story manages to touch on love, tragedy, violence, loyalty, career, responsibility, politics, and refugees. [a:W. Somerset Maugham|4176632|W. Somerset Maugham|http://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1281475888p2/4176632.jpg] manages to pack a lot of plot into just 120 pages.