Summary (Masterplots II: British and Commonwealth Fiction Series)
The opening pages of Venusberg introduce a young English journalist, Lushington, who is about to embark on a voyage into unfamiliar emotional and geographical territory. Lushington’s assignment to a country still torn by political strife (never named but, according to Anthony Powell’s memoir Infants of the Spring, 1976, based on Finland) comes at a time when his personal affairs are in limbo. His former lover Lucy, with whom he is still on very good terms, has conceived an unrequited passion for his friend da Costa, who is now stationed in the country to which Lushington has been assigned. Since this relationship shows no signs of resolving itself into either a complete break from or a reconciliation with Lucy, Lushington starts his journey with feelings of both sadness and romantic expectation: Although he will certainly miss Lucy, his new posting may result in new loves and adventures.
On the sea voyage out, Lushington makes the acquaintance of Count Scherbatcheff, an exile from his native Russia who serves as Lushington’s guide to the cultural peculiarities of the Baltic region, and Count Michel Bobel, a smooth-talking schemer who is obviously not the member of the nobility he claims to be. Lushington also becomes intimate with Ortrud Mavrin, a beautiful young married woman who has been away from home and husband on a shopping trip. They soon become lovers with a brisk, matter-of-fact directness that both does and does not...
(The entire section is 841 words.)
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of Venusberg Summary. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!