Christopher's Reviews > The Unstrung Harp; or, Mr Earbrass Writes a Novel.

The Unstrung Harp; or, Mr Earbrass Writes a Novel. by Edward Gorey
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THE UNSTRUNG HARP was Edward Gorey's first novel, published in 1953. Although full of the droll humour that makes all of his efforts true pleasures to read, it is a little different from later, typical Gorey. There is more text with each illustration, and the characters involved are not as realistic as later, although these illustrations are still pen and ink drawings set in Edwardian times.

The story concerns C. F. Earbrass, the "well-known novelist". Earbrass is at work on a new book, and each picture shows a stage. Gorey's book is a wonderful and insightful commentary on the process of literary creation, and I will quote from one page:

"The first draft of TUH is more than half finished, and for some weeks its characters have been assuming a fitful and cloudy reality. Now, a minor one named Glassglue has materialized at the head of the stairs as his creator is about to go down to dinner. Mr Earbrass was aware of the peculiarly unpleasant nubs on his greatcoat, but not the blue-tinted spectacles. Glassglue is about to mutter something in a tone too low to be caught and, stepping sideways, vanish."

If you could only see the illustration accompanying this you would get the book immediately. THE UNSTRUNG HARP is a very funny book and is worth seeking out by all Gorey fans, although THE OTHER STATUE might make a better introduction.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
October 25, 2005 – Finished Reading
July 24, 2007 – Shelved

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