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Various Woman

Penelope Fitzgerald, 2 April 1987

A Voyager Out: The Life of Mary Kingsley 
by Katherine Frank.
Hamish Hamilton, 333 pp., £14.95, February 1987, 0 241 12074 8
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by Gloria Steinem and George Barris.
Gollancz, 182 pp., £12.95, February 1987, 0 575 03945 0
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Joe and Marilyn: A Memory of Love 
by Roger Kahn.
Sidgwick, 268 pp., £10.95, March 1987, 0 283 99427 4
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I leap over the wall 
by Monica Baldwin and Karen Armstrong.
Hamish Hamilton, 308 pp., £4.95, March 1987, 9780241119747
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Diary of a Zen Nun: A Moving Chronicle of Living Zen 
by Nan Shin (Nancy Amphoux).
Rider, 228 pp., £5.95, January 1987, 9780712614320
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... or the reporters who tracked down Joe and Marilyn on their wedding night. In the summer of 1941 Monica Baldwin left the convent where she had been living in the strictest possible enclosure since 1914. ‘I felt like an explorer,’ she wrote, ‘on the verge of setting out.’ Her I leap over the wall (1949) was an attempt to come to terms with her ...

Uncrownable King and Queen

Christopher Sykes, 7 February 1980

The Windsor Story 
by J. Bryan and Charles Murphy.
Granada, 602 pp., £8.95, November 1980, 0 246 11323 5
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... chose to present it, as the pathetic picture of two orphans of the storm, victimised by the hound Baldwin, the main facts on which it is based are widely known and the subject of little dispute. The authors, one of whom wrote the Duke’s autobiography and helped the Duchess with hers, can add much detail but little new basic knowledge, even though Freda ...

Last Words

John Bayley, 7 January 1988

The Collected Stories of Angus Wilson 
Secker, 414 pp., £12.95, November 1987, 0 436 57612 0Show More
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... His cousin Oliver Baldwin described Kipling’s story ‘Mary Postgate’ as ‘the wickedest story in the world’. It did shock its readers very much, but it is not entirely easy to determine just what the shocking element was, perhaps still is. Told with a subdued but cheerful elegance a little in the manner of Jane Austen’s novels, which Kipling much admired, it is a tale about a virtuous spinster companion during the Great War, whose employer’s nephew in the RFC is killed on a training flight ...

Phenomenologically Fucked

Alex Abramovich: Percival Everett, 19 November 2009

I Am Not Sidney Poitier 
by Percival Everett.
Graywolf, 234 pp., $16, June 2009, 978 1 55597 527 2
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... That Got Away (1992). ‘I read the Bible, the Koran, all of Swift, all of Sterne, Invisible Man, Baldwin, Joyce, Balzac, Auden, Roethke,’ the preternaturally gifted, four-year-old narrator of Everett’s tenth novel, Glyph (1999), announced, in a passage that might have doubled as an abbreviated list of the author’s own interests. (The literary ones, at ...

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