A Tour of the World's Greatest Fictional City
By Anna Quindlen
(National Geographic Society, Paperback, 9780792242079, 162pp.)
Publication Date: January 2006
List Price: $10.95*
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Anna Quindlen first visited London from a chair in her suburban Philadelphia home—in one of her beloved childhood mystery novels. She has been back to London countless times since, through the pages of books and in person, and now, in Imagined London, she takes her own readers on a tour of this greatest of literary cities.
While New York, Paris, and Dublin are also vividly portrayed in fiction, it is London, Quindlen argues, that has always been the star, both because of the primacy of English literature and the specificity of city descriptions. She bases her view of the city on her own detailed literary map, tracking the footsteps of her favorite characters: the places where Evelyn Waugh's bright young things danced until dawn, or where Lydia Bennett eloped with the dastardly Wickham.
In Imagined London, Quindlen walks through the city, moving within blocks from the great books of the 19th century to the detective novels of the 20th to the new modernist tradition of the 21st. With wit and charm, Imagined London gives this splendid city its full due in the landscape of the literary imagination.
Praise for Imagined London:
"Shows just how much a reading experience can enrich a physical journey." —New York Times Book Review
"An elegant new work of nonfiction... People will be inspired by this book." —Ann Curry, Today
"An affectionate, richly allusive tribute to the city." —Kirkus Reviews