William Somerset Maugham (pronounced mawm), was an English novelist, playwright and a short story writer. He lived from 1874–1965. He studied in Dune and qualified as a doctor, but found his calling in writing. Maugham also travelled far and wide to Europe, North America, the Far East, the South seas and beyond.
Maugham’s works are characterized by a clear unadorned style, cosmopolitan settings and a shrewd understanding of human nature. There are many biographical details in his stories and characters. He avoids verbose sentimentality, favouring spare yet vivid, often cynical prose. His reputation as a novelist rests primarily on four books: ‘of Human Bondage (1915)’, ‘The Moon and Sixpence (1919),’ ‘Lakes and Ale (1930)’ and ‘The Razor’s Edge (1944).’