Tuesday, April 25, 2006


I mentioned in the comments below...

...that I collect books by and about Siegfried Sassoon (World War I - and after - poet and novelist/memoir writer). Here's one of my favorite Sassoon dust jackets, from his 1957 poetry book Sequences (Dan, this is for you - and by the way, Sassoon dedicated this book to H.M. Tomlinson). My earnest and happy salute goes to the book designer who put together this striking jacket. The same lettering and design are on both the front and back of the jacket, by the way, and the book is of a fairly small size, which makes the black lettering even more dramatic and lovely. Some consider it bad typography when the typeface, letterform, design, or point size stands out or calls udndue attention to itself, rather than blend or meld into a pleasing whole, but in this case I have to say that I love it all. Especially those strange slightly smaller "s" at the beginning of his first and last names. The jacket has some foxing and a tear in the lower corner, but overall the book is near fine or better.

Here's just one line, from the poem "Human Bondage" (p.62):

"I know a night of stars within me..."

i had never heard of sassoon but i have a feeling i have something for you in the shop. may take a few years to find it, but all in time...

i am starting a collection of shakespeariana, specificly the journal of that name published in the 1880's. there are some bound volumes floating around, but they are hard to find. Also collecting Oxfordian heresies and the related studies. i say heresies because most people still have not even questioned the Authorship question, and to suggest that someone besides the illiterate stratford crow wrote the works certainly ruffles some feathers.

hey, do you have any interesting wisconsin related books in your shop? i'd trade you for east coast material.....

Sarah, that is just lovely- thanks for posting it. I haven't yet read any Sassoon, but he is definitely on the list. I'd like to get his Memoirs of an Infantry Officer to add to my small but growing collection of WWI writers (Tomlinson, Montague, Blunden). Of course, a book of his poems, dedicated to Tomlinson...

Driftless, no Wisconsiniana (can that really be a word?) at the moment, but will certainly keep you in mind. I'm always looking for good New England books... and if you find any Sassoon, just shout. I have a lot already, but am always interested in more. It's a sickness. I'm not looking for a cure, mind you.

Dan - "Memoirs of an I.O." is almost as good as Blunden's "Undertones of War" - which is pretty damn good. Some of Sassoon's poetry is satire (hard to read now - it didn't age well), and he converted to Catholicism late in life so his later poetry can be a little ponderous. But there are moments of beauty there that make it all worthwhile. And his prose is very fine.
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