Thinking of Home: William Faulkner’s Letters to His Mother and Father, 1918-1925
About this book
"How often have I lain beneath rain on a strange roof, thinking of home," says Darl Bundren in William Faulkner's As I Lay Dying. How much Faulkner himself is speaking may be suggested by this moving collection of nearly 150 letters. Written during his twenties, these letters describe Faulkner's first encounters with the North ("...I made my first subway trip yesterday. The experience showed me that we are not descended from monkeys, as some say, but from lice."); his brief World War I military service, which grew in the retelling; the productive New Orleans months with Sherwood Anderson; and his first trip to Europe, with cold autumn days in Paris ("Good thing the Lord gave these folks wine--they rate a recompense of some kind for this climate.") Fascinating in themselves for their close observation of people and places, the letters also offer glimmers of The Sound and the Fury and other future works, as the young writer stores up characters, settings, and events that will re-emerge, transformed, int the great novels of his maturity. Never before published, these letters are from the Faulkner collection at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center at the University of Texas at Austin. "These letters, for years sequestered and unavailable, are among the most informative, touching, and eloquent William Faulkner ever wrote. No Faulkner specialist can be without this book; no Faulkner admirer should be without it."—Joseph Blotner, author of Faulkner: A Biography
It is fascinating to see Faulkner evolve from a naive young student into a writer focused on his craft through this collection of letters to his family. A (self) portrait of the artist as a young man, for sure.
These letters are so sweet and innocent! So fresh and open. It's hard to believe that the same person who wrote (or would write) The Sound and The Fury and As I Lay Dying wrote these letters.
Boleh lah, when you have absolutely nothing else to do :-)