An Editor's Life
By Diana Athill
Grove Press, Paperback, 9780802138620, 256pp.
Publication Date: January 31, 2002
Diana Athill's Stet is "a beautifully written, hardheaded, and generally insightful look back at the heyday of postwar London publishing by a woman who was at its center for nearly half a century" (The Washington Times). A founding editor of the prestigious publishing house Andre Deutsch, Ltd., Athill takes us on a guided tour through the corridors of literary London, offering a keenly observed, devilishly funny, and always compassionate portrait of the glories and pitfalls of making books. Stet is a must-read for the literarily curious, who will revel in Athill's portraits of such great literary figures as Jean Rhys, V. S. Naipaul, Norman Mailer, Philip Roth, Mordecai Richler, and others. Spiced with candid observations about the type of people who make brilliant writers and ingenious publishers (and the idiosyncrasies of both), Stet is an invaluable contribution to the literature of literature, and in the words of the Sunday Telegraph, "all would-be authors and editors should have a copy." "Wryly humorous ... notable for its extraordinary lucidity...." -- The New York Times Book Review "A beguiling tonic to book business sob stories... Stet can barely contain Athill's charm and great big heart." -- Newsday "In addition to telling a good story, Athill writes profoundly about how she is affected by the books she loves." -- The Boston Globe