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O cruel!

Michael Mason, 16 June 1983

Far Away and Long Ago 
by W.H. Hudson.
Eland, 332 pp., £3.95, October 1982, 0 907871 25 9
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W.H. Hudson: A Biography 
by Ruth Tomalin.
Faber, 314 pp., £13.50, November 1982, 0 571 10599 8
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... and green places, and the winds on the heath, and saw the brightness of the skirts of God.’ Ruth Tomalin’s active interest in Hudson is of long standing, for she wrote a biography of him as long ago as 1954. She is obviously deeply acquainted with her subject. But her response to the special problems of writing about Hudson is not always ...

Young, Pleasant, Cheerful, Tidy, Bustling, Quiet

Dinah Birch: Mrs Dickens, 3 February 2011

The Other Dickens: A Life of Catherine Hogarth 
by Lillian Nayder.
Cornell, 359 pp., £22.95, December 2010, 978 0 8014 4787 7
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... It doesn’t come as a surprise to learn that he could treat women badly. Twenty years ago, Claire Tomalin made his hypocrisies apparent in The Invisible Woman: The Story of Nelly Ternan and Charles Dickens, an account of Nelly’s struggles as the illicit lover of the nation’s celebrated defender of domestic virtue. ...

The Importance of Aunts

Colm Tóibín, 17 March 2011

... be. In Novel Relations: The Transformation of Kinship in English Literature and Culture 1748-1818, Ruth Perry examined the make-up of the family in the early years of the novel. ‘Despite the emphasis on marriage and motherhood in late 18th-century society,’ she writes, mothers in novels of the period are notoriously absent – dead or otherwise ...

Memoirs of a Pet Lamb

David Sylvester: A Memoir, 5 July 2001

... Coward’s; later she suggested that I might become a couturier. My sister was named Jacqueline Ruth: in later life her friends called her Jackie, but at home she was always Jac.When my father came out of the Army he got into the same kind of work as all his brothers. At first, Abe, the eldest, decided to be a dentist and changed his surname to Murray so ...

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