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Joseph Conrad was born in the Ukraine in 1857 and grew up under Tsarist autocracy. In 1874 Conrad travelled to Marseilles, where he served in French merchant vessels before joining a British ship in 1878 as an apprentice. In 1886 he obtained British nationality. Eight years later he left the sea to devote himself to writing, publishing his first novel, Almayer's Folly, in 1895. The following year he settled in Kent, where he produced within fifteen years such modern classics as Youth, Heart of Darkness, Lord Jim, Typhoon, Nostromo, The Secret Agent and Under Western Eyes. He continued to write until his death in 1924.
Hesperus's centenary edition of the Conrad classic also includes The Congo Diary and Up-River Book, which essentially are notes from his six-month stay in the Congo in 1890. His travels there and sojourn on the river apparently served as the inspiration for the novel. The book also features introductions for Heart and The Congo Diary as well as textual notes for all sections. Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.