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The sixth volume of Kipling's letters, now collected and annotated for the first time, covers the last five years of his life.
Kipling continued to write, though his production was seriously slowed by increasing suffering from a duodenal ulcer. His last collection of stories, Limits and Renewals, shows no diminution in inventiveness and skill, and he continued to produce work down to the week of his death. Except for a trip to Egypt in 1931 and an excursion to a Czech spa in 1935, his travels were now limited to France, where he and his wife spent some winter months. Two honors especially pleased him: election to the Institut de France, and election to an honorary fellowship of Magdalene College, Cambridge. Aware of the approaching end, Kipling worked at two great retrospective efforts that would exhibit both life and work: the splendid Sussex Edition, and the autobiographical Something of Myself; both were published posthumously. Kipling died in January 1936; his ashes are buried in Poet's Corner, Westminster Abbey.
Volume 6 of the letters contains a comprehensive index to all six volumes of the edition.
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From reviews of the previous volumes:
Volumes 1 & 2
'Thomas Pinney's editing is informative, concise, always relevant.' - Peter Keating, Financial Times
'...these letters will be of interest to all those fascinated by Kipling's development as both a writer and a cultural critic.' - New York Review of Books
'...the whole correspondence... is as compulsive to read through...as any of [Kipling's] stories.' - John Bayley, Times Literary Supplement
'As in the previous two volumes, Pinney's editing of volume three of the letters is meticulous and lucidly succinct.' - Sandra Kemp, Times Higher Education Supplement
'This is a perfect bedside book and an important contribution to Kipling scholarship.' - Ian McIntyre, The Times
'Kipling is well served by his editor, Thomas Pinney. Pinney is discreet, methodical and judicious. His notes are brief and to the point, his selection of letters is wide-ranging and presented to form a coherent narrative.' - Miranda Seymour, Times Literary Supplement
'...the latest volume of his magnificent (and magnificently edited) letters... Kipling the letter-writer is a fairly irresistible force.' - Jeremy Lewis, The Observer
'...Thomas Pinney's magnificent ongoing edition of The Letters of Rudyard Kipling...' - Mick Imlah, The Guardian
Reviews for this volume:
'Thomas Pinney himself points out that there will never be a complete edition of Kipling's letters...This seems to me, however, to be a admirable collection, well selected, clearly set out and with illuminating and informative footnotes which must themselves have demanded a formidable effort of research.' - Juliet Townsend, Spectator
THOMAS PINNEY is William M. Keck Distinguished Service Professor of English, emeritus, at Pomona College, California, and former chair of the department. In addition to editing volumes 1, 2, 3 and 4 of Kipling's letters, he is editor of the Essays of George Eliot and the Letters of Thomas Babington Macaulay, and the author of A History of Wine in America.
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