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I love Sylvia Townsend Warner. I highly recommend her sparkling Letters (edited by William Maxwell). Of her fiction I have read, and enjoyed, her first novel Lolly Willowes, about a spinster aunt who gains independence in a rather surprising way; Mr Fortune's Maggot, about a missionary on a Pacific island; and Kingdoms of Elfin, curious short stories about faeries, written late in her life.


Lethe--I was hoping that someone who had read her work would comment here. I have one of her novels published by Virago, The True Heart, which I've not yet read (and now can't quite remember what it is about--must go dig it out), but she seems like an intriguing person. I seem to keep finding new authors via their short stories! I'll have to look for the books you mention as well!


Oddly enough, when we married, my husband had in his book collection a Sylvia Townsend Warner, something about Don Juan, I recall, It was such an anomaly, a Virago book of all things, amongst my husband's collection, and of course he hadn't read it. I didn't know the author, can't now recall the blurb and in fact I think I gave it to a jumble sale. What was I thinking?

Dorothy W.

I don't know anything about Warner. And I think it's odd to have an anthology without information about the authors -- to have at least a brief biographical write-up is pretty standard, isn't it?


Litlove--How interesting that your husband owned one of her books. I wonder what it was that drew him to it. Pity it ended up in a jumble sale--that's what I'm always afraid will happen. I'll get rid of a book I think I'm not at all interested in, and then a year later it will be exactly the book I Need to read!
Dorothy--Several of my little mass market anthologies fail to give any sort of introduction or biographical information, which I find sort of irritating. The Wave me Goodbye collection of WWII stories is excellent--not only a good intro, but excellent bios! Why can't they all do that?! And I like to hear the reasoning behind why an editor chose the stories he did.


Within this book would you recommend any other stories with the same theme, or like theme.


John--I'm afraid I've only read a handful of the stories in this book, though they've all been excellent. This story is pretty unique, and I'm not sure I can pick one out that is similar in theme of those I read (sorry to be so unhelpful). You might see what other stories she's written. I read a lot of stories last year--I've linked to them all here:

I'll have to think about this one--there might be something in another collection. I'll leave another comment here if I can think of one in the next day or so.


John--This one comes to mind as being a little bit in the same vein, but it's in a different collection:


I am so very happy to have found your website. I have been searching for this short story for years. It was in my book in English class in high school and it has been haunting me. Thank you!


Heather--This is a wonderful short story collection and I think it is still in print. I read this a couple of years ago when I was on a short story kick--I still need to read more of her work!

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