John's Reviews > The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas

The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Feb 07, 2012

it was ok

I really liked this book when I read it back in my college days, but I can't for the life of me remember why. I suppose it has something to do with my fascination by the whole Parisian literary scene of the 1920's. Yes, I went through my Hemingway and Fitzgerald period like just about every American male college kid.

Rereading it now, I don't feel that the little tidbits about my favorite authors and painters (and there are quite a few) are worth the trouble of plodding through Stein's autobiography. The cute trick of the title seems like a way to justify all the praise heaped on Gertrude Stein, by herself! It sort of reads like the compliments are coming from somebody else (Alice B. Toklas), but of course it is Stein who is tooting her own horn here. And there is a lot of tooting. Most of the book is about what Stein was thinking about when she came up with various innovations in modern writing (which she, according to this book, invented), the various sources of her writing and which works they ended up in, the trouble she had in publishing most everything she wrote and so on. Unless you are a huge Stein fan and managed to read some of her stuff (not an easy task, go ahead and try to read Tender Buttons or The Making of Americans, I dare you!), you will not care one whit about all this.


Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.