Ohioan Sherwood Anderson, 46, had his fourth novel, Many Marriages, published last month. His first appeared seven years ago, around the time he embarked on a second marriage, to sculptor Tennessee Mitchell, now 49.
Many Marriages by Sherwood Anderson
The review in the New York Herald, by F. Scott Fitzgerald, 26, currently working on his third novel, was positive. In “Sherwood Anderson on the Marriage Question,” Fitzgerald said he thinks Many Marriages is Anderson’s best work.
Henry Seidel Canby, 44, in the New York Evening Post declares,
if we are to have an American Thomas Hardy, [Sherwood Anderson] is the man.”
Those leading crusades against “dirty books” are not as impressed. Because Anderson’s work deals with sexual freedom, they have linked it with other contemporary novels such as Women in Love by D. H. Lawrence, 37, which they have tried to ban.
However, today’s issue of Time magazine points out that when Many Marriages was serialized in a magazine, there was resounding praise. Now that it is a hardback book, many find it boring—including Edmund Wilson, 27, in The Dial; Burton Rascoe, 30, in the New York Tribune; and the dean of Manhattan columnists, FPA [Franklin Pierce Adams], 41, in the New York World.
Burton Rascoe by Gene Markey
But Sherwood is pleased with a complimentary letter he has received from his mentor and friend in Paris, American ex-pat writer Gertrude Stein, 49, who likes Many Marriages.
Stein has praised him privately and in print before, including her recent piece in The Little Review, “Idem the Same: A Valentine to Sherwood Anderson,” which says, in the section titled, “A Very Valentine,”:
Very fine is my valentine.
Very fine and very mine.
Very mine is my valentine very mine and very fine.
Very fine is my valentine and mine, very fine very mine and mine is my valentine.”
To hear Gertrude Stein read the complete poem, click here.
“Such Friends”: 100 Years Ago… is the basis for the series, “Such Friends”: The Literary 1920s. Volumes I through III, covering 1920 through 1922 are available at Thoor Ballylee in Co. Galway, and as signed copies at Riverstone Books in Squirrel Hill, Pittsburgh, PA. They are also on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk in print and e-book formats. For more information, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This summer I will be talking about Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway in the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Carnegie-Mellon University.
Manager as Muse, about Scribner’s editor Maxwell Perkins’ relationships with Fitzgerald, Hemingway and Thomas Wolfe, is also available on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk in both print and e-book versions.
If you want to walk with me through Bloomsbury, you can download my audio walking tour, “Such Friends”: Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group.