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Selected Stories of Sylvia Townsend Warner

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More About This Book

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This posthumous collection of 47 stories is an impressive legacy that embodies a numinous talent. A prolific author of novels, poetry and biography, Warner's mastery of her art remains exemplary in its powerful complexity, its finely honed, unsentimental perceptiveness and immediacy of description, deep sensitivity and literate, graceful style. Many of the stories (written between 1932 and 1977) are set in English villages and focus on middle-aged protagonists often enduring rather than transcending their ostensibly unremarkable lives, confronting losses and botched opportunities and sometimes breaking out of bounds to manifest themselves. But Warner can as well evoke the feelings of a young German soldier fighting for Fascism in Spain, or a devout Mexican pastry-cook. Occasionally the author's wicked wit flattens her characters and makes her stories reductive, yet her mastery of her craft sustains their quality. The collection ends with extracts from her autobiographical writings and the magical Kingdoms of Elfin , cruel fairy tales about mortality and aging, which manifest her protean imagination and powerfully celebrate the natural world viewed with a clear, unsparing eye. (Dec.)
Library Journal
Warner is always rewarding, and here even more so because these 47 stories, chosen from her prolific output, illustrate her varied capacity to create fictional worlds, whether magical, humorous, realistic, romantic, or historical. Especially distinctive is her consistent attention to hundreds of background details that infuse each character, each situation with believability and delight. Warner's short stories have justifiably earned her a foremost status in contemporary literature, and this selection is a judicious introduction to her extraordinary talent which encompasses poetry, biography, and full-length fiction as well. Glenn O. Carey, Eastern Kentucky Univ., Richmond
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780670824670
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 12/5/1988
  • Edition description: 1st American ed
  • Pages: 464
  • Product dimensions: 20.00 (w) x 20.00 (h) x 20.00 (d)

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