(London: Published by Leonard and Virginia Woolf at The Hogarth Press, 1937). 191 x 127 mm. (7 1/2 x 5"). 2 p.l., 469 pp. FIRST EDITION.
Publisher's light green cloth and printed dust jacket. Kirkpatrick A22a. Very faint uniform darkening to the jacket spine, otherwise AN ESPECIALLY FINE COPY IN A VERY FINE JACKET, virtually faultless inside and out.
A major work in the Virginia Woolf canon, and the first novel by her to appear after "The Waves" of 1931, "The Years" is somewhat less experimental in style, making it one of the author's most readable works. It chronicles the lives of a group of siblings, beginning with their childhood in the 1880s and continuing for half a century. One sister becomes a brilliant society hostess, another turns suffragette; one brother becomes a scholar, another a soldier. The resemblance to the author's own large family of siblings is hardly coincidental, so that much of the work reflects the responses of Woolf and her family to rapidly changing times. Reviewing the work when it was first published, Peter Monro Jack in the "New York Times" wrote, "This is . . . lyricism in the form of a novel, with flying buttresses to sustain its airy and often absent-minded inspirations. There is the minimum of substructure. But there is everywhere, on one lovely page after another, . . . writing which reveals a kind of feeling that is more illuminating than a dozen well-made and documented novels. Mrs. Woolf has made, or unmade, her novel in the form of a poem or a piece of music." The dust jacket issued with this volume is even more difficult than usual to find in fine condition, as it is here, because its spine almost always turns rather quickly to an unpleasant brown. (ST10952)
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PJP Catalog: 75.279