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Square Haunting by Francesca Wade
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Square Haunting by Francesca Wade
Paperback $18.00
Apr 06, 2021 | ISBN 9780451497802

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“Riveting . . . vividly written . . . Wade offers us a timely invitation to join our literary foremothers in their rebellious journeys to achieve creative freedom and world harmony.”—Blanche Wiesen Cook, The New York Times Book Review

“Fascinating . . . In telling their stories—which collide, overlap and echo one another—Wade follows the messy, inspiring destinies of women who fought to rise above social restrictions, oppressive notions of femininity and the condescension of men who were nearly always their inferiors.” —NPR “Fresh Air”

Square Haunting is at once a tribute to Virginia Woolf’s powerful concept of a woman’s need for a room of her own, and an exploration of the contradictions and messy compromises so often involved in fulfilling that need. . . . A very readable and enjoyable book.”—Margaret Drabble, The New Statesman

“Captivating . . . superb . . . Wade has pulled off a remarkable feat of intellectual and social history with her erudite yet juicy first book. . . . An engaging narrative, movingly bookended by descriptions of the obliteration of a world she so vividly evokes. . . . This impressive feminist history stands as an elegiac love letter to a bygone time and place that offered brilliant, iconoclastic women a unique opportunity for freedom and self-expression.”—Wall Street Journal

“Endlessly interesting, unshowy, tightly argued and large-hearted. . . . The women’s characters and situations leap off the page, helped by the kind of details—from interior décor to what they wore—that bring prose alive. . . . Wade reframes half a century of supposedly familiar literary and intellectual history and illustrates everything Woolf meant by ‘a room of one’s own’.”—Aida Edemariam, The Guardian

“Powerful . . . Just as Harrison and Power rewrote history to include the lives of forgotten women, so Wade reestablishes the importance of thinkers like Power and H.D., whose legacies have been eclipsed by those of their male contemporaries.”—The New Yorker

“Serious, stylish . . . It is a pleasure to fall into step with the eloquent, elegant Wade as she stamps the streets of literary London. I would give a copy to every young woman graduating from university and wondering who and how to be.”—Laura Freeman, The Times

“Rich and powerful.”—Ruth Franklin, Harper’s

“Original and erudite. . . . Wade is adept at evoking the gritty texture of the times, taking us seamlessly from the interior lives of her subjects into the world they inhabited and back again. . . . Wade distils half a century of social and literary history into these five women’s lives with a marvellously light touch. This is biography as fresh and engaging as you are likely to find.”—Ariane Bankes, The Spectator


Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prize LONGLIST 2021

The Baillie Gifford Prize LONGLIST

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