Call Me Zelda
In this novel, Erika Robuck looks especially closely at the mental illness Zelda experienced. In Baltimore’s Phipps Clinic at Johns Hopkins Hospital, where Zelda was admitted in 1932 after various stints in sanatoriums around Europe, she meets Anna Howard, a nurse who becomes devoted to her. Anna begins to wonder if Zelda is the true literary genius of the couple, but as she tries to emotionally save Zelda, the boundaries of their friendship become strained, while Zelda’s devotion to Scott continues, complex and unreliable as he is. Narrated by Zelda’s nurse, the novel is historically accurate in its depictions of Zelda and Scott and deals with the art of madness, and the madness of art.
Flapper is an inside look at the 1920s. With tales of Coco Chanel, the French orphan who redefined the feminine form; Lois Long, the woman who christened herself “Lipstick” and gave New Yorker readers a thrilling entrée into Manhattan’s extravagant Jazz Age nightlife; three of America’s first celebrities: Clara Bow, Colleen Moore, and Louise Brooks; Dallas-born fashion artist Gordon Conway; Zelda and Scott Fitzgerald, whose swift ascent and spectacular fall embodied the glamour and excess of the era; and more, this is the story of America’s first sexual revolution, its first merchants of cool, its first celebrities, and its most sparkling advertisement for the right to pursue happiness.
Bobbed Hair and Bathtub Gin
Capturing the jazz rhythms and desperate gaiety that defined the era, Meade gives us Dorothy Parker, Zelda Fitzgerald, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and Edna Ferber, traces the intersections of their lives, and describes the men (F. Scott Fitzgerald, Edmund Wilson, Harold Ross, and Robert Benchley) who influenced them, loved them, and sometimes betrayed them. Here are the social and literary triumphs (Parker’s Round Table witticisms appeared almost daily in the newspapers and Ferber and Millay won Pulitzer Prizes) and inevitably the penances each paid: crumbled love affairs, abortions, depression, lost beauty, nervous breakdowns, and finally, overdoses and even madness.
Seduction and Betrayal
The novelist and essayist Elizabeth Hardwick is one of contemporary America’s most brilliant writers, and Seduction and Betrayal, in which she considers the careers of women writers as well as the larger question of the presence of women in literature, is her most passionate and concentrated work of criticism. A gallery of unforgettable portraits–of Virginia Woolf and Zelda Fitzgerald, Dorothy Wordsworth and Jane Carlyle–as well as a provocative reading of such works as Wuthering Heights, Hedda Gabler, and the poems of Sylvia Plath, Seduction and Betrayal is a virtuoso performance, a major writer’s reckoning with the relations between men and women, women and writing, writing and life.
Out of Her Mind
Out of Her Mind captures the best literature by and about women struggling with madness. A remarkable chronicle of gifted and unconventional women who have spun their inner turmoil into literary gold, the collection features classic short stories, breathtaking literary excerpts, key historical writings, and previously unpublished letters by Zelda Fitzgerald.
Zelda Fitzgerald still has a hold on our imagination. Wife of F. Scott Fitzgerald, the writer who brought us The Great Gatsby, Zelda was a novelist and artist in her own right. In fact, Scott’s Tender is the Night is thought to have been largely ripped from letters between him and his wife. Today, many believe that Zelda Fitzgerald was a lost literary genius—there’s certainly no disputing that she influenced her husband’s writing—who’s been ignored largely because of her husband’s fame, as well as her own declining mental health and the subsequent stays in various institutions as doctors attempted to cure her schizophrenia.
In honor of Zelda Fitzgerald’s birthday, which falls on July 24, we bring you some books that are all Z.—rather than F. Scott—Fitzgerald.
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