Felipe Montero is employed in the house of an aged widow to edit her deceased husband's memoirs. There Felipe meets her beautiful green-eyed niece, Aura. His passion for Aura and his gradual discovery of the true relationship between the young woman and her aunt propel the story to its extraordinary conclusion.
"Collages began with an image which had haunted me. A friend, Renate, had told me about her trip to Vienna where she was born, and of her childhood relationships to statues. She told me stories of her childhood, her relationship to her father, her first love. I begin the novel with: Vienna was the city of statues. They were as numerous as the people who walked the streets. They stood on the top of the highest towers, law down on stone tombs, sat on horseback, kneeled, prayed, fought animals and wars, danced, drank wine and read books made of stone. They adorned cornices like the figureheads of old ships. They stood in the heart of fountains glistening with water as if they had just been born. They sat under the trees in the parks summer and winter. Some wore costumes of other periods, and some no clothes at all. Men, women, children, kings, dwarfs, gargoyles, unicorns, lions, clowns, heroes, wise men, prophets, angels, saints, and soldiers preserved for Vienna a vision of eternity. As a child Renate could see them from her bedroom window. At night, when the white muslin curtains fluttered out like ballooning wedding dresses, she heard them whispering like figures which had been petrified by a spell during the day and came alive only at night. Their silence by day taught her to read their frozen lips as one reads the messages of deaf mutes. On rainy days their granite eye sockets shed tears mixed with soot. Renate would never allow anyone to tell her the history of the statues, or to identify them. This would have situated them in the past. She was convinced that people did not die, they became statues. They were people under a spell and if she were watchful enough they would tell her who they were and how they lived now. If I had been asked then what was going to follow the description of the statues, I could not have answered. I was fascinated by the image of these many statues and of the child Renate inventing stories about them and dialoguing with them. It may have been that this image expressed the feeling I often had that people appear to us as a one-dimensional statue until we go deeper into their life story. People are like mute statues under a spell of appearance, and static, until we let them whisper their secrets. And this only happens at night. That is, when we are able to dream, imagine, and explore the unconscious. We see the external self. Because Collages took its images from painting and sculpture, I liked the idea that sculpture and painting could become animated, speaking, confessing, and then in daylight returning to their previous forms as statues or paintings. They spoke only to the artist. To me it meant dramatizing our relation to art, one feeding the other, the interrelation between human beings and the artist's conception of them. In daylight (consciousness) we catch them all only in one attitude, one form. At night, we discover their lives." -Ana s Nin, "The Novel of the Future," (Athens: Ohio University Press, 1986), 128
O Pioneers!, Willa Cather's first great novel, is the classic American story of pioneer life as embodied by one remarkable woman and her singular devotion to the land. Alexandra Bergson arrives on the wind-blasted prairie of Nebraska as a young girl and grows up to turn it into a prosperous farm. In this unforgettable story,Cather conveys both the physical realities of the landscape, as well as the mythic sweep of the transformation of the frontier, more faithfully and perhaps more fully than any other work of fiction.
Early critical views are by Sylvester Baxter, William Dean Howells, Andrew Lang, Rudyard Kipling, Charles Whibley, Albert Bigelow Paine, John B. Hoben, and anonymous reviewers in the London Daily Telegraph and the Boston Literary World. The later critical essays are by Howard G. Baetzhold, James D. Williams, Kenneth S. Lynn, James M. Cox, Louis J. Budd, Henry Nash Smith, David Ketterer, and Everett Carter.
A Selected Bibliography is also included.
In the south of Italy, between Apulia and Calabria, lies a land that is barren, desolate, and malarial, where the peasants live out their existence in poverty and in the presence of death. it was here in primitive Lucania, at the start of the Ethiopian war (19350, that Carlo Levi, doctor, painter, philosopher, and man of letters, was confined as a political prisoner because of his uncompromising opposition to Fascism. Christ Stopped at Eboli is Levi's classic, starkly beautiful account of a place beyond hope and a people abandoned by history.
I have noticed that sometimes I frighten people; what they really fear is themselves. They think it is I who scare them, but it is the dwarf within them, the ape-faced manlike being who sticks up his head from the depths of their souls.P r Lagerkvist's richly philosophical novel The Dwarf is an exploration of individual and social identity. The novel, set in a time when Italian towns feuded over the outcome of the last feud, centers on a social outcast, the court dwarf PIccoline. From his special vantage point Piccoline comments on the court's prurience and on political intrigue as the town is gripped by a siege. Gradually, Piccoline is drawn deeper and deeper into the conflict, and he inspires fear and hate around him as he grows to represent the fascination of the masses with violence.
In this autobiography, first published in 1929, poet Robert Graves traces the monumental and universal loss of innocence that occurred as a result of the First World War. Written after the war and as he was leaving his birthplace, he thought, forever, Good-Bye to All That bids farewell not only to England and his English family and friends, but also to a way of life. Tracing his upbringing from his solidly middle-class Victorian childhood through his entry into the war at age twenty-one as a patriotic captain in the Royal Welsh Fusiliers, this dramatic, poignant, often wry autobiography goes on to depict the horrors and disillusionment of the Great War, from life in the trenches and the loss of dear friends, to the stupidity of government bureaucracy and the absurdity of English class stratification. Paul Fussell has hailed it as ""the best memoir of the First World War"" and has written the introduction to this new edition that marks the eightieth anniversary of the end of the war. An enormous success when it was first issued, it continues to find new readers in the thousands each year and has earned its designation as a true classic.
This is the third volume in the 'Sword of Honor' trilogy. The other volumes in this trilogy include: 'Men at Arms' and 'Officers and Gentlemen'.
Evelyn Waugh (1903-1966), whom Time called "one of the century's great masters of English prose," wrote several widely acclaimed novels as well as volumes of biography, memoir, travel writing, and journalism. Three of his novels, A Handful of Dust, Scoop, and Brideshead Revisited, were selected by the Modern Library as among the 100 best novels of the twentieth century.