Sunday, January 18, 2009

On my bedside table

Love Letters: Leonard Woolf & Trekkie Ritchie Parsons 1941 - 1968 (by Judith Adamson)

I can't wait to curl up with this book!

'This collection of letters documents the relationship between Leonard Woolf, the writer best known as the husband of Virginia Woolf and publisher of the Hogarth Press, and Trekkie Parsons, a painter and book designer more than 20 years his junior. The correspondence lasts from the beginning of their friendship in 1941, the year Virginia Woolf died, until Leonard's death in 1968. Throughout most of that time, Woolf and Parsons were involved intimately and designed rather unusual living arrangements with shared or neighboring houses, where Ian Parsons, Trekkie's husband and Woolf's colleague, joined them.

The letters are sporadic, since Woolf and Trekkie spent as much time as possible together, and they often seem to continue conversations that occurred off the page, making the letters difficult to read. The letters are unedited, though Adamson (English, Dawson Coll., Montreal) has added footnotes to help the reader navigate through their social circles. She also provides headnotes and an introduction.

Woolf's letters are startlingly romantic and moving, and the letters reveal the development of the couple's intimacy. They also show Woolf and Trekkie sharing their professional and artistic concerns and dealing with the minutiae of daily life. These very personal letters, mostly kept private until Trekkie died in 1995, will be of greatest interest to those fascinated by the Woolfs and anything Bloomsbury.'

(Paolina Taglienti, Long Island Univ., Brooklyn, NY Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information)

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