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A smart selection from Fitzgerald's voluminous correspondence, tactfully annotated and chronologically arranged by Bruccoli (English/Univ. of South Carolina), who has collected and edited all of Fitzgerald's writings in over 20 volumes. Bruccoli provides a brief biography, subtle footnotes, and detailed chronologies at the beginning of each section, but Fitzgerald here speaks for himself and the familiar story takes on the ironies, texture, poignancy, and passion that often elude biographers. Fitzgerald appears in all his complexity, yet without much introspection. He had little interest in heavy-handed psychologizing. The external manifestations of character, personality, manners, and talent—these he valued, and these, as the letters show, he had. Also revealed are his wit, charm, and ambition (to write the greatest American novel); his literary ideals, his self-criticism (especially after long periods of drinking), and his generosity (offering money to the chronically impoverished Hemingway even as he was appealing for advances on his own magazine stories, mostly for the Saturday Evening Post). His letters to his editor, Maxwell Perkins, are especially revealing about his craft, his good-natured response to criticism, and the selective way he accepted advice (fortunately, The Great Gatsby was not renamed Tancredi). The relationship between his life and his work is powerfully demonstrated in this brief collection: He writes This Side of Paradise to earn money to marry Zelda—then they live like literary characters, until Zelda, from drinking and the misplaced ambition to become a ballet dancer, goes insane, her confinement and treatment inspiring and financed by Tender Is the Night. Perhaps the most touching letters are to his daughter, Scotty, who he feared would be victimized by simply being his child. A wrenching portrait of the trials of writing, the business of success, the proximity of genius and tragedy.

Pub Date: June 1, 1994

ISBN: 0-684-19570-4

Page Count: 515

Publisher: Scribner

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 1994

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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This is not the Nutcracker sweet, as passed on by Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa. No, this is the original Hoffmann tale of 1816, in which the froth of Christmas revelry occasionally parts to let the dark underside of childhood fantasies and fears peek through. The boundaries between dream and reality fade, just as Godfather Drosselmeier, the Nutcracker's creator, is seen as alternately sinister and jolly. And Italian artist Roberto Innocenti gives an errily realistic air to Marie's dreams, in richly detailed illustrations touched by a mysterious light. A beautiful version of this classic tale, which will captivate adults and children alike. (Nutcracker; $35.00; Oct. 28, 1996; 136 pp.; 0-15-100227-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 28, 1996

ISBN: 0-15-100227-4

Page Count: 136

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1996

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