The Club

The Club

Pity the poor biographers! They become psychic roommates with their subjects, giving up years to submerge their own lives in writing and research so they can render informed judgments supported by footnotes. When they finish the whole thing (I have heard biographers...
West of Sunset by Stewart O’Nan

West of Sunset by Stewart O’Nan

A novel of the last years of F. Scott Fitzgerald. Every time I re-read F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Last Tycoon, published posthumously after his death, I want to throttle him. I want to shake his shoulders. Why, oh why couldn’t you keep it together enough to finish this...
Resurrected Women: Jean Rhys

Resurrected Women: Jean Rhys

  After publishing a flurry of short, well-received, ephemeral novels in the 1920’s and 1930’s, after years of traipsing around the Continent, Jean Rhys fetched up in Cornwall, England. Here she lived in reduced circumstances, settled into thirty...
Resurrected Women: Barbara Pym

Resurrected Women: Barbara Pym

In the 1980’s I spent a lot of time in England where I ran full-tilt, one might say, into books published by Virago Press. Virago, an upstart publisher, made a recent splash with their commitment to women writers, past and present. And what a lot of past there...
Jane Eyre

Jane Eyre

When I first read Jane Eyre, perhaps at age twelve or thirteen, I was intolerable for months. Southern California was very short on wild moors, and I longed for them. A little breathlessly I imagined a great love for a difficult man worthy of my affections. So...

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