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These letters, written between 1918 and 1962, and selected and edited by the author of Faulkner: A Biography, may disappoint the majority of readers; they yield neither the picture of private affairs and sentiments nor the record of compositional experimentation that, for example, Virginia Woolf's correspondence does. But Faulkner was no lover of the letter-writer's art. When he wrote to his agents, editors, publishers, and Hollywood employers—and these letters constitute 90 percent of the present volume—he maintained a firm emphasis upon the difficult business of making a living from his craft. He'd often inquire about the disposition of a magazine story, for instance, or ask for an advance on royalties after describing meticulously the books his publishers could expect to receive in return. This isn't to say that Faulkner's irony, jocosity, well-known political convictions and liking for a colorful story are entirely absent; only that none of the letters approach the intensity and rhetorical power of the novels. Then, too, the most intimate letters—those to Faulkner's women, those about family crises, even some quoted at length in Blotner's biography—have been deleted or chopped to bits. As a result, this selection will be most rewarding for those interested in the considerable irregularities of Faulkner's publishing career, and in his synoptic notes about works-in-progress. Blotner's explanatory footnotes are helpful and concise.

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 1976

ISBN: 0394725050

Page Count: -

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Sept. 15, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1976

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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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An extravaganza in Bemelmans' inimitable vein, but written almost dead pan, with sly, amusing, sometimes biting undertones, breaking through. For Bemelmans was "the man who came to cocktails". And his hostess was Lady Mendl (Elsie de Wolfe), arbiter of American decorating taste over a generation. Lady Mendl was an incredible person,- self-made in proper American tradition on the one hand, for she had been haunted by the poverty of her childhood, and the years of struggle up from its ugliness,- until she became synonymous with the exotic, exquisite, worshipper at beauty's whrine. Bemelmans draws a portrait in extremes, through apt descriptions, through hilarious anecdote, through surprisingly sympathetic and understanding bits of appreciation. The scene shifts from Hollywood to the home she loved the best in Versailles. One meets in passing a vast roster of famous figures of the international and artistic set. And always one feels Bemelmans, slightly offstage, observing, recording, commenting, illustrated.

Pub Date: Feb. 23, 1955

ISBN: 0670717797

Page Count: -

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: Oct. 25, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1955

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