A fantastical novel by Ford Madox Ford, the author of Parade's End and The Good Soldier.
Ford Madox Ford (the name he adopted in 1919: he was originally Ford Hermann Hueffer) was born in Merton, Surrey, in 1873. His mother, Catherine, was the daughter of the Pre-Raphaelite painter Ford Madox Brown. His father, Francis Hueffer, was a German emigre, a musicologist and music critic for The Times. Christina and Dante Gabriel Rossetti were his aunt and uncle by marriage. Ford published his first book, a children's fairytale, when he was seventeen. He collaborated with Joseph Conrad from 1898 to 1908, and also befriended many of the best writers of his time, including Henry James, H.G. Wells, Stephen Crane, John Galsworthy and Thomas Hardy. He is best known for his novels, especially The Fifth Queen (1906 - 8), The Good Soldier (1915) and Parade's End (1924 - 8). He was also an influential poet and critic, and a brilliant magazine editor. He founded the English Review in 1908, discovering D.H.Lawrence, Wyndham Lewis and Ezra Pound, who became another close friend. Ford served as an officer in the Welch Regiment 1915 - 19. After the war he moved to France. In Paris he founded the transatlantic review, taking on Ernest Hemingway as a sub-editor, discovering Jean Rhys and Basil Bunting, and publishing James Joyce and Gertrude Stein. In the 1920s and 1930s he moved between Paris, New York, and Provence. He died in Deauville in June 1939. The author of over eighty books, Ford is a major presence in twentieth-century writing. Of his novels, Carcanet publish The Good Soldier, Parade's End, The Rash Act and Ladies Whose Bright Eyes. Carcanet also publish The English Novel, The Ford Madox Ford Reader, A History of Our Own Time and Selected Poems, War Prose, Return to Yesterday, and other titles. Some of these have been released as part of The Millennium Ford series, which aims to bring all his major work back into circulation. C.H. Sisson was born in Bristol in 1914. He was noted as a poet, novelist, essayist and an important translator. He was a great friend of the critic and writer Donald Davie, with whom he corresponded regularly. Sisson was a student at the University of Bristol where he read English and Philosophy. As a poet he first came to light through the London Arts Review founded by the painter Patrick Swift and the poet David Wright. He reacted against the prevailing intellectual climate of the 1930s, particularly the Auden Group, preferring to go back to the anti-romantic T. E. Hulme, and to the Anglican tradition. The modernism of his poetry follows a 'distinct genealogy' from Hulme to Eliot, Pound, Ford Madox Ford and Wyndham Lewis. His novel Christopher Homm experiments with form and is told backwards. Sisson served in the British Army during World War II in India and joined the Ministry of Labour in 1936. He worked as a civil servant and wrote a standard text The Spirit of British Administration (1959) arising from his work and a comparison with other European methods. Sisson was a 'severe critic of the Civil Service and some of his essays caused controversy'. In his collection The London Zoo he writes this epitaph 'Here lies a civil servant. He was civil/ To everyone, and servant to the devil.' C. H. Sisson was made a Companion of Honour for services to literature in 1993. Carcanet publish his Collected Poems, his novels, essays, and his autobiography On the Lookout, as well as his versions of Dante, Virgil, La Fontaine, Du Bellay, Lucretius and others.