The Letters of Vita Sackville-West and Virginia Woolf

Front Cover
Louise A. DeSalvo, Mitchell A. Leaska
Cleis Press, Jan 10, 2004 - Literary Collections - 480 pages
3 Reviews
After they met in 1922, Vita Sackville-West, a British novelist married to foreign diplomat Harold Nicolson, and Virginia Woolf began a passionate relationship that lasted until Woolf’s death in 1941. Their revealing correspondence leaves no aspect of their lives untouched: daily dramas, bits of gossip, the strains and pleasures of writing, and always the same joy in each other’s company. This volume, which features over 500 letters spanning 19 years, includes the writings of both of these literary icons.

DeSalvo and Leaska established the chronological order of the letters and placed them in sequence, and they have also included relevant diary entries and letters Vita and Virginia wrote to other friends where they add context and illumination to the narrative. Annotations throughout the text identify peripheral characters, clarify allusions, and provide background. As the New York Times noted, "the result is a volume that reads like a book, not just a gathering of marvelous scraps."

In his introduction Mitchell A. Leaska observes, "Rarely can a collection of correspondence have cast into more dramatic relief two personalities more individual or more complex; and rarely can an enterprise of the heart have been carried out so near the verge of archetypal feeling."

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Chris_V - LibraryThing

An interesting collection of the correspondence between Sackville-West and Woolf. The letters are rarely covered in full - more often than not there are only a paragraph or two which actually makes ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - briantomlin - LibraryThing

A pleasant discovery, having read everything by Virginia Woolf, to get more insight into her relationship with Vits Sackville-West. This volume presents the development of the deepest kind of ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (2004)

Louise DeSalvo is a writer, professor, lecturer, and scholar who lives in New Jersey. Her many books include the memoirs "Vertigo, Breathless," and "Adultery"; the acclaimed biography "Virginia Woolf: The Impact of Childhood Sexual Abuse on her Life and Work"; and "Writing as a Way of Healing," She also edited Woolf's early novel "Melymbrosia" and coedited "The Milk of Almonds: Italian American Women Writers on Food and Culture,"

Bibliographic information