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Virginia Woolf's first collection of essays demonstrates her eccentric, entertaining brilliance as a literary critic

Virginia Woolf read, and wrote, as an outsider, denied the educational privileges of her male contemporaries. She was perhaps better able, then, to address a 'common reader' in this wide-ranging collection of essays. With all the imagination and gaiety that are the stamp of her genius, she turns from medieval England to tsarist Russia, and subjects Elizabethan playwrights, Victorian novelists and modern essayists to her wise, acute and entertaining scrutiny.

Essays on Jane Austen, George Eliot, Nancy Mitford, Joseph Conrad, Montaigne, Defoe and many others.

Reviews

Her essays are delightful in the way that serious play is delightful. She is enjoying herself, and reading her gives me that leaping sense of being in excellent company

Jeanette Winterson, The Times

More like novels than ordinary criticism

New Statesman

Woolf was easily the greatest literary journalist of her age

James Wood,, Guardian

It is all pure Woolf, so distinctive is her voice - ironic, cool, conversational and playful, shrewd and fantastical by turns

Literary Review

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Formats & editions

  • EBook

    9781448182145

    February 26, 2015

    Vintage Digital

    288 pages

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  • Paperback

    9780099443667

    February 15, 2003

    Vintage Classics

    288 pages

    RRP $19.99

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