Nurse Lugton's Curtain

Overview

Frozen in the pattern of a drawing-room curtain, a dreamlike world waits patiently while Nurse Lugton sews. As she dozes in the lamplight, the animals adorning the curtain nod to one another and slowly awaken, making their way toward a sparkling lake and a magical town.

This wondrous story by Virginia Woolf was found among the manuscript pages of her Mrs. Dalloway. Julie Vivas's glorious illustrations bring ...

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Vivas, Julie NY 1991 Hardcover 1st Edition New in New jacket Book. 4to-over 9?-12" tall. This is a New and Unread copy of the first edition (1st printing). In a mylar jacket ... cover. Read more Show Less

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Overview

Frozen in the pattern of a drawing-room curtain, a dreamlike world waits patiently while Nurse Lugton sews. As she dozes in the lamplight, the animals adorning the curtain nod to one another and slowly awaken, making their way toward a sparkling lake and a magical town.

This wondrous story by Virginia Woolf was found among the manuscript pages of her Mrs. Dalloway. Julie Vivas's glorious illustrations bring Mrs. Woolf's words to life to create a magical volume that will enchant children and adults alike.

As Nurse Lugton dozes, the animals on the patterned curtain she is sewing come alive.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Virginia Woolf fans may be curious to discover her picture-book tale of magic, Nurse Lugton's Curtain, first published in a collection in 1965; and Julie Vivas's illustrations first appeared with the text in 1991. Nurse Lugton falls asleep while embroidering a curtain, and the animals and village depicted on the drapery come alive. Vivas aptly depicts a transformed Lugton, incorporated into the landscape, slumbering over the village. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
Nurse Lugton is making curtains for Mrs. Gingham's drawing room. In this story, legendary writer Virginia Woolf brings the animals on the curtains alive—at least while Nurse Lugton is asleep. The blue background turns into water and air, and the thimble on her finger turns into the bright sun. Even Nurse Lugton's face is transformed into beautiful mountains for the people and the animals of the tiny village of Millamarchmantopolis. This imaginative and enchanting tale will delight children everywhere. This story was found among the pages of Virginia Woolf's manuscript for her novel Mrs. Dalloway. Leonard Woolf said that Virginia wrote the story for her niece. The beautiful illustrations bring the story to life, just as the tale describes. One can see how monkeys, zebras and birds seem to climb off the tapestry into a world of their own. This picture book has been reprinted, and the quality of text and illustrations are a treat to readers of all ages. 2004 (orig. 1991), Gulliver Books, Ages 4 to 12.
—Nicole Peterson
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-- When great authors write small tales for children of their acquaintance, it is not always their best work, especially if ``found among the pages'' of their manuscripts. Virginia Woolf's story, first in print in 1965 and republished here as a picture book, is indeed a small tale. Nurse Lugton's curtain, on which she is sewing when she falls asleep, comes alive briefly, releasing its pattern of animals and villagers and sunbaked buildings in the town of Millamarchmantopolis. When Nurse Lugton awakes, the parade of animals and people falls quickly back into the folds of the cloth and the story is done. However, this is Virginia Woolf's story, and the simple tale flows with the rhythms of an accomplished prose writer. Vivas's watercolor illustrations flow across the pages like the prose, with parading animals and marching villagers costumed as if for Mardi Gras. Jungle animals and Africans surround Nurse Lugton's sleeping head, hands, and feet until suddenly she wakens and everything tumbles back into the folds of the cloth and reality resumes its dull symmetry. --Shirley Wilton, Ocean County College, Toms River, NJ
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780152005450
  • Publisher: Harcourt Children's Books
  • Publication date: 3/15/1991
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 7 years

Meet the Author

VIRGINIA WOOLF (1882-1941) was one of the major literary figures of the twentieth century. An admired literary critic, she authored many essays, letters, journals, and short stories in addition to her groundbreaking novels.

JULIE VIVAS is illustrator of I Went Walking, Let's Go Visiting, the Mem Fox classics Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge and Possum Magic, and several other picture book titles. She lives in Australia.

Biography

Virginia Woolf is now recognized as a major twentieth-century author, a great novelist and essayist and a key figure in literary history as a feminist and a modernist. Born in 1882, she was the daughter of the editor and critic Leslie Stephen, and suffered a traumatic adolescence after the deaths of her mother, in 1895, and her stepsister Stella, in 1897, leaving her subject to breakdowns for the rest of her life. Her father died in 1904 and two years later her favorite brother Thoby died suddenly of typhoid. With her sister, the painter Vanessa Bell, she was drawn into the company of writers and artists such as Lytton Strachey and Roger Fry, later known as the Bloomsbury Group. Among them she met Leonard Woolf, whom she married in 1912, and together they founded the Hogarth Press in 1917, which was to publish the work of T. S. Eliot, E. M. Forster and Katherine Mansfield as well as the earliest translations of Freud. Woolf lived an energetic life among friends and family, reviewing and writing, and dividing her time between London and the Sussex Downs. In 1941, fearing another attack of mental illness, she drowned herself.

Her first novel, The Voyage Out, appeared in 1915, and she then worked through the transitional Night and Day (1919) to the highly experimental and impressionistic Jacob's Room (1922). From then on her fiction became a series of brilliant and extraordinarily varied experiments, each one searching for a fresh way of presenting the relationship between individual lives and the forces of society and history. She was particularly concerned with women's experience, not only in her novels but also in her essays and her two books of feminist polemic, A Room of One's Own (1929) and Three Guineas (1938). Her major novels include Mrs. Dalloway (1925), the historical fantasy Orlando (1928), written for Vita Sackville-West, the extraordinarily poetic vision of The Waves (1931), the family saga of The Years (1937), and Between the Acts (1941).

Author biography courtesy of Penguin Group (USA).

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    1. Also Known As:
      Adeline Virginia Stephen Woolf (full name)
    1. Date of Birth:
      January 25, 1882
    2. Place of Birth:
      London
    1. Date of Death:
      March 28, 1941
    2. Place of Death:
      Sussex, England

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