Dancing with Mrs. Dalloway: Stories of the Inspiration Behind Great Works of Literature
The Real Stories Behind Everyone's Favorite Novels-from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz to The Great Gatsby.
Every great book begins with an idea, whether it comes to a writer's mind with lightning speed or tugs at the imagination over time. Dancing with Mrs. Dalloway offers stories of the inspiration behind fifty classic works, from The Sound and the Fury, Jane Eyre, and F
This collection of four-page essays on the sources of inspiration of some fifty well known-novels--ranging from Naked Lunch and Mrs. Dalloway to "The Wind and the Willows" and "The Hobbit"--is a quick and enjoyable read.
Veteran readers who know a lot of this stuff already will still acquire a few interesting anecdotes, and intelligent high school students--one of whom recommended this to me--will find it very informative.
Johnson refuses to go dark or deep--J.M. Barrie and Lewis Carroll, for ex ...more
I remember really liking this book when I first started it, but I put it down, thinking that I could read a story in it every night (which was stupid [!!] because look at my track record with books). Although I do not actually know how factual each story in this book is, the work is work cited for each claim it makes. I felt ...more
Did you know Atticus in Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird is named after Titus Pomponius Atticus, close friend of Cicero? Also that dear friends gave Harper Lee a year off from work (financial support) so she could write, and Mockingbird is the result.
Jane Eyre was written by Charlotte Bronte after she heard news of a governess who found out that her husband had a secret w ...more
I have recently become interested in writing, and have had trouble taking the plunge, but if you're like me, one of the things you will learn from Ian Fleming (James Bond series) "never mind about the brilliant phrase or the golden word, once the typescript is there you can fiddle, correct, ...more
The stories about the inspiration behind the various works of fiction are just that stories, anecdotes with no reference to source material, footnotes, or even quotes. There is nothing in the way the story is presented th ...more
Nah, that wouldnt have been any fun. Still, congrats Blue, on a very enjoyable read.
The synopsis' feel hollow when viewed through the lens of such legendary works, the book equivalent of YouTube popularity brainletism: Ten Things About Famous Books. None of these mini-histories increased my enjoyment of the novels, so why bother?
It might provide you enough annoying trivia to get your funky chicken kicked out of ...more
There are so many unique tales behind the best-known stori ...more
For some, like Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, it was a game: her monster was born form the idea of horror itself, his bits and pieces belonging to an overheard conversation on the topic of the reanimation of bodies. For others, like Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes, the steps of the cerebral sleuth had been tread by another, as the masterful detective was based off of - at least partially - a one time medical professor of Doyle's. For ...more
The writing is simple and straightforward; the author conveys her stories in an accessible way, with only a few clunke ...more
Have you ever wondered what inspired a particular author to write a book? For instance, why did Margaret Mitchell write "Gone with the Wind?" What drove Ernest Hemingway to pen "The Old Man and the Sea?" What inspired L. Frank Baum to create "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz?" Author Celia Johnson provides the intriguing back stories to those literary classics and many more in her fascinating book, "Dancing with Mrs. Dalloway." Johnson book traces the origins of some 50 famous titles. Along with the a...more
It was an easy read, but I'd have to say a good one.
I really enjoyed reading about all the different ways authors of classic literature gained their inspiration. I also really appreciated that this book's author made it clear when there was any doubt about the veracity of any of the stories.