Books of Letters

About the Challenge Forums Month of Letters 2013 Books of Letters

This topic contains 16 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by  Will Bryce 1 year, 8 months ago.

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  • #3595

    John deBoer
    Participant

    One of my favorite things is books of letters.  I love them to browse through, though I don’t think I would ever just read one cover-to-cover.  I have here at my apartment several of them: Virginia Woolf, Keats, Abelard and Heloise, the painter Eugene Delacroix; and in books not totally dedicated to letters, Samuel Johnson, John Donne, William Blake, Abraham Lincoln, etc.  (I can’t say I find the Epistles of Paul to be very interesting, but hey, they’re letters too, and I’ve got a Bible as well.)  There’s also lettersofnote.com, of course.

    Does anyone else read letters for fun or inspiration?  Any recommendations?  Maybe we could quote or excerpt some interesting letters here?

  • #3658

    Anonymous

    Hi,

    I love books of letters and I do read them from cover to cover, I have read several from your list.  I also love to read diaries and journals, some times these books are so full or history and inspiration or just plain fun.

  • #3794

    Anny
    Participant

    I had absolutely no idea that books like this existed.. :O

  • #3796

    Sauni-Rae Dain
    Participant

    I have read a few in a series of books called “Covered Wagon Women.” They are collections of letters as well as some backstory or personal history of the writers. Very interesting reads.

     

  • #3836

    Julie Jordan Scott
    Participant

    Books of letters are among my favorite. Right now I am reading Sylvia Plath’s letters home to her mother between 1950 and 1963.

    I enjoy Anne Morrow Lindbergh’s letters, which are interspersed with diary entries.

    I even buy letters from the 1920’s, 30’s and 40’s between “ordinary” people. You might say I am into reading letters. I find the way people document their lives to be fascinating. With the older letters I collect, all the old fashioned styles of speech are written… and in the World War II letters, the censor gets spoken of from time to time. LOVE it!

    If you would like to receive mail from me, please send me your address via postable.
    www.postable.com/juliejordanscott

  • #3946

    teabird
    Participant

    I love collections of letters! If you’re looking for some wonderful correspondence, try the letters that the Mitford sisters wrote to each other: The Mitfords: letters between six sisters edited by Charlotte Mosley.

     

  • #3959

    Kazen
    Participant

    Thomas Jefferson wrote many many many letters during his life – something like 20,000!  The Jefferson-Adams Letter collection is a wonderful place to start.

  • #3963

    Sauni-Rae Dain
    Participant

    Thomas Jefferson wrote many many many letters during his life – something like 20,000! The Jefferson-Adams Letter collection is a wonderful place to start.

    OOOh. I am going to have to look at that one!

    I spent last year, reading the unabridged version of Pres. Reagan’s personal diaries from his years as President. They are really kind of fun. His daily activities and observences. Kind of fits with letters as well.

  • #4050

    Julia
    Participant

    I recently started reading a collection of letters from Victorian-era pioneers in Australia in the 1850s and I picked up a set of Queen Victoria’s letters quite cheap at the last Lifeline Bookfair. I sometimes despair at how poor my letter writing is compared to some of these people, but I think it’s all just practice and I’m used to emails and instant messaging. Hopefully letter writing is a developable skill 🙂

    Julia

  • #4061

    eepy post
    Participant

    How about Helene Hanff”s book, “84 Charing Cross Road”?    It’s one of my all time favourites!

  • #4130

    Anonymous

    How about Helene Hanff”s book, “84 Charing Cross Road”? It’s one of my all time favourites!

    This is one of my favorites too, and the 2 other books bring it all together:  Q’s Legacy and The Duchess of Bloomsbury Street.

  • #4182

    Maureen Estolas
    Participant

    I read  Wallis and Edward:  Letters of 1931-1937, the intimate correspondence of Prince Edward, Duke of Windsor, and his mistress Mrs. Willis Simpson.  Prince Edward gave up the throne to marry Mrs. Simpson.

  • #4370

    skwan
    Participant

    I have been going through a collection of letters by Saul Bellow and it has been interesting to read what concerned him throughout the decades.

  • #5649

    eepy post
    Participant

    As long as we’re talking about Books of Letters, is there anyone else that loves epistolary fiction?

    I’m thinking books like Ella Minnow Pea or The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

  • #5959

    teabird
    Participant

    As long as we’re talking about Books of Letters, is there anyone else that loves epistolary fiction? I’m thinking books like Ella Minnow Pea or The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.

     

    I love epistolary fiction!

    Check out this challenge for some great suggestions:

    http://indextrious.blogspot.com/2013/01/postal-reading-challenge-sign-up-post.html

  • #6118

    Melanie
    Participant

    Thanks for sharing my reading challenge, Teabird! Yes, as evident, I also love epistolary fiction and books about letters and/or the post! There are so many wonderful novels in letters, just a few of my favourites are Fraulein Schmidt and Mr. Anstruther by Elizabeth von Arnim, the History of Emily Montague by Frances Brooke,  and one I am currently halfway through and really enjoying, Sir Charles Grandison by Samuel Richardson. Lots of fun to read, I agree, and I also love reading diaries and collections of real letters as well.

  • #31102

    Will Bryce
    Participant

    Is there any downloadable book of letter portfolio, one that I could reprint via our local printer.

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