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Documenting the quest to track down everything written by (and written about) the poet, translator, critic, and radio dramatist, Henry Reed.

An obsessive, armchair attempt to assemble a comprehensive bibliography, not just for the work of a poet, but for his entire life.

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Henry Reed, ca. 1960


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I Capture the Castle: A girl and her family struggle to make ends meet in an old English castle.
Dusty Answer: Young, privileged, earnest Judith falls in love with the family next door.
The Heat of the Day: In wartime London, a woman finds herself caught between two men.


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«  Fossil Book Reviews from the Forties  »

Reeding Lessons: the Henry Reed research blog

23.9.2017


Fossil Book Reviews from the Forties

I recently purchased an old, six drawer library card catalog on eBay. It's missing a couple of finger-pulls, but other than that it's in pretty decent shape. Still had the metal followers in all the drawers. This produced a remarkably vivid sense-memory: the feeling of tabbing through a drawer full of cards with my fingertips. I don't think I've actually used a physical card catalog since around 1990.

One thing about starting to re-organizize, notes and cites I had written ages ago floated to the top. The database is too large to browse properly, even broken down into subjects, and it needs more sorting options (like by date).

I came across a reference to a book review of Reed's A Map of Verona, from a 1946 Listener that I had never followed up. All I had was a date and a page number. No volume, no issue number. No title. I didn't even bother to write down where I had originally found the review cited. (Not noting sources and cross-references is a bad habit I cannot seem to break.)

It was so easy, I don't know why I hadn't tried to look it up before: Listener v. 35, no. 906 (23 May 1946): 690. "Book Chronicle." And in I put for a photocopy through interlibrary loan. We'll see, but that may be the last review from the Forties that I didn't already have. Which may be why I was putting it off: there can only be so many secondary sources left, and everything else is just third-order.

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What is Henry Reed's first name?

1513. Hodge, Alan. "Thunder on the Right." Tribune (London), 14 June 1946, 15.
Hodge finds 'dry charm as well as quiet wit' in "Judging Distances," but overall feels Reed is 'diffuse and not sufficiently accomplished.'



1st lesson:

Reed, Henry (1914-1986). Born: Birmingham, England, 22 February 1914; died: London, 8 December 1986.

Education: MA, University of Birmingham, 1936. Served: RAOC, 1941-42; Foreign Office, Bletchley Park, 1942-1945. Freelance writer: BBC Features Department, 1945-1980.

Author of: A Map of Verona: Poems (1946)
The Novel Since 1939 (1946)
Moby Dick: A Play for Radio from Herman Melville's Novel (1947)
Lessons of the War (1970)
Hilda Tablet and Others: Four Pieces for Radio (1971)
The Streets of Pompeii and Other Plays for Radio (1971)
Collected Poems (1991, 2007)
The Auction Sale (2006)


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