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Darkness at Noon (German: Sonnenfinsternis) is a novel by Hungarian-born British novelist Arthur Koestler, first published in 1940. His best known work, it is the tale of Rubashov, an Old Bolshevik who is arrested, imprisoned, and tried for treason against the government that he helped to create. The novel is set in 1939 during the Stalinist Great Purge and Moscow show trials. Despite being based on real events, the novel does not name either Russia or the USSR, and tends to use generic terms to describe people and organizations: for example the Soviet government is referred to as "the Party" and Nazi Germany is referred to as "the Dictatorship". Joseph Stalin is represented by "Number One", a menacing dictator. The novel expresses the author's disillusionment with the Bolshevik ideology of the Soviet Union at the outset of World War II. In 1998, the Modern Library ranked Darkness at Noon number eight on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century, even though Koestler wrote it in German.
Depicting the daily struggle of the individual against a tyrannical dictatorship, We the Living shows the terrible impact of a revolution on three people who demand the right to live their own lives and pursue their happiness. Kira, determined to maintain her independence and courageous in the face of starvation and poverty; Leo, upper class and paralysed by state repression; and Andrei, an idealistic communist and officer in the secret police who nonetheless wants to help his friends.
To the Lighthouse is a 1927 novel by Virginia Woolf. The novel centres on the Ramsay family and their visits to the Isle of Skye in Scotland between 1910 and 1920. Following and extending the tradition of modernist novelists like Marcel Proust and James Joyce, the plot of To the Lighthouse is secondary to its philosophical introspection. Cited as a key example of the literary technique of multiple focalization, the novel includes little dialogue and almost no action; most of it is written as thoughts and observations. The novel recalls childhood emotions and highlights adult relationships. Among the book's many tropes and themes are those of loss, subjectivity, the nature of art and the problem of perception. In 1998, the Modern Library named To the Lighthouse No. 15 on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. In 2005, the novel was chosen by TIME magazine as one of the one hundred best English-language novels since 1923.
Miguel Street is a collection of linked short stories by V. S. Naipaul set in wartime Trinidad and Tobago. The stories draw on the author's childhood memories of Port of Spain. The street of the title appears to be a fictionalized version of Luis Street where the author lived with his family in the 1940s. As well as writing about the Hindu community to which he belongs, Naipaul references black culture including a number of calypso lyrics which relate to the themes of the book.