The moral of the story seems to be that publishing is not such a great industry to get involved with. At the end Hugh the publisher goes back to school teaching. Plus in addition the conclusion seems to be that everyone is ultimately driven by a lust for power. Everyone it seems apart from the narrator.
The last couple of paragraphs, after all the loose ends have been tied-up, have Powell musing about what drove his characters on. But just as with Nick Jenkins in Dance to the Music the narrative figure seems to be content drifting along observing rather than getting directly involved with the rat run.
In the end of the story the various different strands are concluded and you do put the book down having enjoyed a tale that makes fun of what isn’t there. In the case of Waring it was an absence of any real writing talent, the case of the séance crowd the absence of happiness with the current world and for those in the publishing world the constant hunt to end the absence of the happiness that a best seller would deliver.
A review will follow soon…