All the Conspirators
Author: Christopher Isherwood
Publisher: New Directions (1979)
A timeless story of decaying middle-class English life after wwI and the generation that tried to escape its values
Christopher Isherwood was only twenty-one when he began his first novel, All the Conspirators. In his introduction to the American edition, Isherwood explains: “All the Conspirators records a minor engagement in what Shelley calls ‘the great war between the old and young.’ And what a war it was!” in many ways this novel (like the classic Berlin Stories) is a period piece growing out of a particular historical situation―clashes between parents and children with all their passionate moral struggles. Isherwood’s vivid portrayal of an older generation trying to hold on while a younger generation tries to wrench free still resonates and disarms.