Sunflower [NOOK Book]

Overview

West’s posthumously published semi-autobiographical novel
A beautiful actress of the 1920s faces painful decisions about her lovers and her future
Star of the stage, Sunflower has everything but the attention she craves from her long-time—and married—lover, Lord Essington, a brilliant and intense man occupied with more intellectual thoughts. Eager for a more rewarding experience, Sunflower must decide whether another “great man,” the Australian...
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Sunflower

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Overview

West’s posthumously published semi-autobiographical novel
A beautiful actress of the 1920s faces painful decisions about her lovers and her future
Star of the stage, Sunflower has everything but the attention she craves from her long-time—and married—lover, Lord Essington, a brilliant and intense man occupied with more intellectual thoughts. Eager for a more rewarding experience, Sunflower must decide whether another “great man,” the Australian Francis Pitt, will offer a more traditional relationship and happiness. Written during West’s own psychoanalysis and never finished, Sunflower ponders topics of the power struggle between the sexes, and a woman’s freedom to determine her romantic destiny.
Drawn heavily from West’s own relationships with H.G. Wells and Lord Beaverbrook, this roman à clef gives a glimpse of the author’s own struggle to find a satisfying relationship.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Perhaps understandably, the distinguished novelist, journalist and woman-of-letters never completed this novel she wrote in the 1920s, an outright roman a clef based on her affairs with H. G. Wells and the newspaper tycoon Lord Beaverbrook. Sunflower is the name of the central character, a beautiful, rich actress externally unlike her creator but internally similar in some interesting ways, as Dame Rebecca's authorized biographer Victoria Glendinning makes wonderfully clear in an illuminating afterword. Sunflower's long affair with the Wells character, Lord Essingtona scandal in its time that only an avowed feminist of West's courage would darehad run its course. In its wake she forms a relationship with Francis Pitt as West did with Beaverbrook, a most unsatisfactory liaison. The powerful public woman was deep within an ``eternally feminine'' one desiring marriage and family, home and security. Sunflower enacts these deep wishes, longing for what she cannot attain. As the affairs resolved nothing in life, the author entered psychoanalysis, and one can speculate that the novel's incompletion had much to do with her basic irresolution. As fiction, this is not altogether satisfactory, but it is nonetheless a striking study in the relation of art and life, autobiography and imagination, fact and fantasy. February
Library Journal
Never completed or previously published, Sunflower is a fictional record of a shattering period in West's life: the end of her lengthy relationship with H. G. Wells and her misdirected passion for the colorful Lord Beaverbrook. The novel's protagonist is Sybil ``Sunflower'' Fassendyll, actress and popular beauty of the 1920s, who leads a miserable private life despite wealth and fame. Insecure without male admiration, Sunflower struggles with the increasing aridity of her 10-year liaison with brilliant, married Lord Essington. At last she breaks with him in hopes of conventional happiness with Francis Pitt, a charismatic public figure. Here the plot stops, but West's outline confirms that Sunflower's romantic fortune would parallel her own. A fascinating psychological portrait of female anxiety. For larger collections. Starr E. Smith, Georgetown Univ. Lib., Washington, D.C.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781453206744
  • Publisher: Open Road Media
  • Publication date: 12/21/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: B&N epub
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 356,694
  • File size: 451 KB

Meet the Author

Dame Rebecca West (1892–1983) is one of the most critically acclaimed English novelists, journalists, and literary critics of the twentieth century. Uniquely wide-ranging in subject matter and breathtakingly intelligent in her ability to take on the oldest and knottiest problems of human relations, West was a thoroughly entertaining public intellectual. In her eleven novels, beginning with The Return of the Soldier, she explored topics including feminism, socialism, love, betrayal, and identity. West’s prolific journalistic works include her coverage of the Nuremberg trials for the New Yorker, published as A Train of Powder, and Black Lamb and Grey Falcon, her epic study of Yugoslavia. She had a son with H.G. Wells, and later married banker Henry Maxwell Andrews, continuing to write, and publish, until she died in London at age ninety.



Dame Rebecca West (1892–1983) is one of the most critically acclaimed and bestselling English novelists, journalists, and literary critics of the twentieth century. In her eleven novels, beginning with The Return of the Soldier, she delved into the psychological landscape of her characters and explored topics including feminism, socialism, love, betrayal, and identity. She was lauded for her wit and intellectual acuity, evident in her prolific journalistic works such as her coverage of the Nuremberg trials for the New Yorker, published as A Train of Powder, and Black Lamb and Grey Falcon, her epic study of Yugoslavia and its people. She had a child with H.G. Wells, but married banker Henry Maxwell Andrews later in life and continued writing until she died in London at age ninety.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 25, 2014

    Prim

    my mom could tell you.......*blushes*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2014

    Cyrus

    Yeah me too *flies to nxt res*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2013

    A Giants garden

    Guarded by shreds of wood, you can easily make your way into the garden. Its filled with tons of different kinds of flowers, a few of them are wilted, but some fairies may fix that. There are one or two fly traps on a ledge by a tiny tranparent wall. Be careful. The smaller Wingless romp around on the fresh grass and flowers.

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

    Posted January 23, 2015

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews

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