Spy in the House of Love

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Overview

Although Anais Nin found in her diaries a profound mode of self-creation and confession, she could not reveal this intimate record of her own experiences during her lifetime. Instead, she turned to fiction, where her stories and novels became artistic "distillations" of her secret diaries. A Spy in the House of Love, whose heroine Sabina is deeply divided between her drive for artistic and sexual expression, on the one hand, and social restrictions and self-created inhibitions, on the other, echoed Nin's personal...
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A Spy in the House of Love

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Overview

Although Anais Nin found in her diaries a profound mode of self-creation and confession, she could not reveal this intimate record of her own experiences during her lifetime. Instead, she turned to fiction, where her stories and novels became artistic "distillations" of her secret diaries. A Spy in the House of Love, whose heroine Sabina is deeply divided between her drive for artistic and sexual expression, on the one hand, and social restrictions and self-created inhibitions, on the other, echoed Nin's personal struggle with sex, love, and emotional fragmentation. Written when Nin's own life was taut with conflicting loyalties, her protagonist Sabina repeatedly asks herself, can one indulge in one's sensual restlessness, the fantasies, the relentless need for adventure without devastating consequences?

A unique, moving story of a modern woman's journey into the depths of love and self-discovery, told in exquisitely erotic language and images of startling emotional truth, penned by "one of contemporary literature's most important writers" (Newsweek) and newly repackaged. Reissue.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Real and unmistakable genius”

— Rebecca West

“A prose/poetry dream, a lyrical celebration of the inner life and the images it evokes.”

— Daniel Stern

“Beautiful, rare novels”

— Karl Shapiro

Oliver Evans
A Spy in the House of Love...is the most ambitious of all the author's longer narratives, the most "experimental." One critic was reminded of "harmonized tableaux such as one sees on the unfolding panels of old Japanese screens, of figures presented in revealing poses." This is poetic prose of a high order, and of a kind rare in English.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780553229691
  • Publisher: Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 9/14/1974
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback

Meet the Author

Anais Nin—the celebrated novelst, diarist, and short story writer—was born in France and spent her childhood in various parts of Europe and in New York. Nin returned to New York just before the outbreak of World War II, and she spent the rest of her life living there and in Paris and Los Angeles. Her work is characterized by a interest in the subconscious. Her five novels in the Cities of the Interior series focus on different female types and follow their lives through lovers, art, and analysis. In 1973 Nin received an honorary doctorate from Philadelphia College of Art. She was elected to the National Institute of Arts and Letters in 1974.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 2.5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2014

    Smut is not literature

    Nor are sex and drugs and alcohol or ones office visits

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 31, 2003

    Greatly Disagree

    DH Lawrence and Anais Nin have completely different styles of writing which cannot be compared. Firstly, Nin is actually not incredibly painful to read. Though I must admit that this was not one of her better works, it still greatly overpowers many of the supposed modern classics. The woman had a gift for the tasteful yet provocative exploration of human sexuality, gender norms, and societal restraints.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 9, 2002

    Not all it's cracked up to be

    Of all of the "classics" that I have read, A Spy in the House of Love was the only one that has been a true disappointment. The story wades through uninspiring page after uninspiring page. I felt nothing for the characters, and failed to see any of the sensuality that has apparently made it such a noteworthy book. For a really good classic that explores sensuality, try something by D.H. Lawrence.

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