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Virginia Woolf in Manhattan

Books Description

“Hang on to your hats, it’s a joy” Jane Gardam, author of Old Filth Virginia Woolf, restored to life in contemporary Manhattan, is amazed at modern attitudes to freedom, love, sex, bookselling and literature “I have been dragged through time, summoned like a book requisitioned from a distant library,”” says Virginia Woolf, “resurrected” by modern-day author, Angela Lamb, working on Woolf manuscripts in the New York Public Library’s Berg collection. Angela dumps her irrepressible daughter at boarding-school to pursue her writing, so, when a bedraggled Virginia materialises among the bookshelves and is promptly evicted, Angela rushes to her rescue, chaperoning her wayward heroine. Virginia drinks in the Algonquin, finds friends’ paintings in the Met, and scams bookstores by selling pristine first editions of her novels, inscribed. Visits to independent booksellers make up for her disappointment in finding iconic bookstores closed. Virginia flies with Angela to a conference in Istanbul, makes friends, finds new lovers, and steals the show at international meeting on – Virginia Woolf. The novel asks what Virginia would make of contemporary literature, the book trade, love, sex and digital addictions? Are we free-er than in Woolf’s day? By showing Woolf’s joy in seizing life, Gee challenges the cliché that great female artists are self-destructive, and engagingly shows Woolf’s ideas on equality, feminism and bisexuality are as vibrant and important as ever. A witty, profound novel about the miraculous possibilities of second chances.

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