The Gadfly

Ethel Voynich

The Gadfly, by Ethel Voynich - click to see full size image

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The Gadfly is a novel by Ethel Voynich, first published in 1897. The book centres on the life of the protagonist, Arthur Burton, a member of the Youth movement, and his antagonist Padre Montanelli. Arthur becomes a journalist, expounding radical ideas in brilliant satirical tracts published under the pseudonym 'the gadfly'. The local authorities are soon dedicated to capturing him. A thread of a tragic relationship also develops between Arthur and his love, Gemma. With the central theme of the book being the nature of a true revolutionary, The Gadfly was exceptionally popular in the Soviet Union, the People's Republic of China and Iran, exerting a large cultural influence. Apparently, the character of Arthur Burton was based on real life Russian agent, Sidney Reilly, with whom Voynich had an affair with.

This book has 100,921 words, 192 pages in the PDF version, and was originally published in 1897.

Production notes: This ebook of The Gadfly was published by Global Grey in 2019, and updated on the 11th August 2022. The artwork used for the cover is 'Villa di Marlia, Lucca: A Fountain' by John Singer Sargent.

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