Cover image for Lasting impressions : essays, 1961-1987
Lasting impressions : essays, 1961-1987
Pritchett, V. S. (Victor Sawdon), 1900-1997.
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Random House, [1990]

Physical Description:
171 pages ; 25 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PR6031.R7 A6 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order


Author Notes

Born in Ipswich and educated at Alleyn's School, Dulwich, and Dulwich College, novelist and critic V. S. Pritchett worked in the leather trade and later as a commercial traveler and shop assistant.

After World War II, he was literary editor of the New Statesman and Nation and has frequently contributed to American periodicals and the N.Y. Times Book Review. He is a distinguished short story writer who has often appeared in the New Yorker. Pritchett has also collaborated with the photographer Evelyn Hofer on three charming and excellent portraits of London, New York, and Dublin. Pritchett, who has been lauded for his fine literary criticism, has also written about many other writers. He received numerous awards including the 1969 Heinemann Award, the 1974 PEN Award, the 1990 W. H. Smith Literary Award, and the 1993 Golden Pen Award. He died from a stroke on March 20, 1997.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Through 70 years (he's now 90), V. S. Pritchett has thrivingly produced in various literary milieus--as short story writer, novelist, biographer, critic, memoirist, and travel writer. This collection of essays, drawn from the London Review of Books, New Statesman, the New Yorker, New York Review of Books, and the New York Times, finds Pritchett in what he calls his "literary journalist" mode. The 27 pieces, each crafted with short-story-like precision, probe the personal, artistic, and even sociopolitical sides of great writers. Among others, Pritchett tackles Orwell ("not a good novelist, but . . . an intrepid pamphleteer"), Mann ("the high-bourgeois artist who claims the rights of the artist-prince yet nevertheless looks down with the melancholy of the artist-surgeon seeking intimations of our mortality"), and Shaw ("His own addictions were the Irish addiction to words and the Puritan's to work"). Other pieces ruminate on the brutal death of Garcia Lorca, V. S. Naipaul and the Islamic revival, Malraux on art, Rushdie prior to The Satanic Verses, Aleichem, Chatwin, Updike, Wilde, Wodehouse, etc. With style, Pritchett testifies again to his knowledge, keen perceptions, and unabashed literary substance. ~--Martin Brady

Library Journal Review

These literary essays are culled from the last 30 years of Pritchett's prodigious career. Though they began as book reviews, they're legitimately essays--and wonderfully old-fashioned essays at that. Pritchett writes about books and authors with insight and appreciation and with a genial, ironic, decidedly personal voice. The book is arranged not chronologically but alphabetically, and so the subjects range from Sholom Aleichem to Mary Wollstonecraft, with such diverse figures as Babel, Browning, Lorca, Orwell, Salman Rushdie, Updike, and Wilde in between. Though it's debatable how lasting Pritchett's impressions really are, any lover of literature will find them thoroughly engaging and agreeable.-- Keith Cushman, Univ. of North Carolina, Greensboro (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.