Letty Fox – Her Luck by Christina Stead

by |May 19, 2011

How many times do I have mention my undying love for Christina Stead before someone sends me a review copy!? No-one even told me that a new edition of Letty Fox – Her Luck was in production! Do I have to set up a fan club? And now it’s here and I look like a doofus for not mentioning it earlier. (shakes head)

That said: Thank goodness Miegunyah – an imprint of Melbourne University Press – who have the very cool slogan, Books With Spine – have published Letty Fox – Her Luck. A whole new generation of men and women can bask in the glow that is Christina Stead’s genius. (Too strong?)

Letty Fox – Her Luck is one of Christina Stead’s very best. It anticipates the modern woman – with all of her cares and worries, freedoms and their consequences – beating lesser novelists to her by fifty years. And is, in my opinion, still yet to be bettered. This book is not for the idle reader. This book requires the reader sit up and pay attention. But that said, it is not a difficult read – it’s truth makes it compelling reading…

From the Publisher:

Christina Stead’s brilliant satire of marriage, desire and the conventions that surround them.

One hot night last spring, after waiting fruitlessly for a call from my then lover, with whom I had quarrelled the same afternoon, and finding one of my black moods on me, I flung out of my lonely room on the ninth floor (unlucky number) in a hotel in lower Fifth Avenue and rushed into the streets of the Village, feeling bad.

Letty Fox – Her Luck, Christina Stead’s sixth novel, was first published in New York in 1946, and banned in Australia for its salaciousness. Set in wartime Manhattan and told in Letty’s own spiky and exuberant voice, the novel follows her successes and failures in the game of ‘being somebody’. Letty’s tireless pursuit of love and sex provides the setting for Stead’s brilliant satire of marriage, desire and the conventions that surround them..

About the Author: Christina Stead was born in Sydney in 1902, and died there in 1983. Most of her life was spent elsewhere: in London, Paris and other places in Europe, and in the United States. Her first book, The Salzburg Tales, was published in 1934, followed by twelve more works of fiction.. She was the recipient of the inaugural Patrick White Literary Prize.

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About the Contributor

John Purcell (aka Natasha Walker) is the author of The Secret Lives of Emma trilogy published by Random House Australia. The Secret Lives of Emma: Beginnings reached the top ten on the Australian fiction charts and Natasha/John was the tenth highest selling Australian novelist and third highest selling Australian debut author in 2012. The trilogy has since sold over 50,000 copies in print and ebook and has been translated into French, Korean and Polish. John has worked in the book industry for over twenty-five years. While still in his twenties he opened John’s Bookshop, a second-hand bookshop in Mosman in which he sat for ten years reading, ranting and writing. Now he is the Director of Books at booktopia.com.au.

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