The Starched Blue Sky of Spain, and Other Memoirs: Memoirs of a Woman's Literary and Political Life..

Josephine Herbst, Author, Diane Johnson, Illustrator HarperCollins Publishers $19.95 (178p) ISBN 978-0-06-016512-3
Herbst, whose novels (the Trexler trilogy) and nonfiction were praised in the 1930s, was virtually ignored as a writer in her later years and after her death at age 77 in 1969. Even such formerly admiring ``friends'' as Katherine Anne Porter came to belittle Herbst at the end of her life. But during that period she prevailed over poverty and loneliness to write the four incomparable essays reprinted here. The title piece evokes the internecine Spanish war and Herbst's experiences among fellow correspondents Hemingway and Dos Passos and with the country's suffering people. Insight and unstudied elegance are displayed in memoirs of the Midwest and of Germany as the Nazi threat loomed during the 1920s. Her recollections of a 1930 writers' conference in Russia leaves an indelible impression of the era that saw a worldwide revolution in politics and art. Courageous as she was, Herbst never revealed her lesbian affairs although the first one ended her marriage to John Herrmann, whom she truly loved and always regretted losing. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 07/29/1991
Release date: 08/01/1991
Paperback - 208 pages - 978-0-06-092305-1
Paperback - 192 pages - 978-1-55553-399-1
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