Elizabeth Bowen: The Heat of the Day

(1090 words)

Dust jacket blurbs can sometimes be widely off target when it comes to summing up a book’s essence, but in the case of a recent reprint of Bowen’s best-known novel, a few words manage to intrigue the potential reader and provoke a nod of recognition in the seasoned Bowen fan: “Imagine a Graham Greene thriller projected through the sensibility of Virginia Woolf.” On the surface, no two literary influences can be further apart. The worldly, womanizing Catholic man of action who dismissed his most popular novels as mere “entertainments”, and the religious skeptic and experimental explorer of interiority could hardly be united, let alone give birth to a viable literary offspring. And yet, Bowen admired Woolf, …

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Brassard, Genevieve. "The Heat of the Day". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 22 May 2008
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=629, accessed 27 November 2015.]