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Footprints in the Jungle


British novelist, playwright, short-story writer, Somerset Maugham was the highest paid author in the world in the 1930s. Despite his popularity, Maugham did not gain serious recognition from his contemporaries. In many of his novels, the setting is international and the stories are told in a clear, economical style. His thirst to see the world was evidenced by the fact that, disguising himself as a reporter, Maugham worked for British Intelligence in Russia during the Russian Revolution in 1917, but his stuttering and poor health hindered his career in this field. The stress from trying to maintain a properly ordered British lifestyle in among civilizations and societies in various states of disorder results in a violent murder that leaves a body with half its head shot off in “Footprints in the Jungle." Maugham claims the events related in the story reveal no creativity or imagination on his part; they all actually took place. He set the story in a fictionalized Malay state where the narrative unfolds as a story of the social scandal involving adultery, the discovery of illegitimate pregnancy, and the subsequent murder of an inconvenient husband by cheating couple. The most striking element of the story is that the passage of each year without their crime being detected reduces their feelings of remorse and increases their enjoyment of a comfortable life together. Listen online to free English audiobook "Footprints in the Jungle” on our website to experience the William Somerset Maugham’s short story.

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