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Diana Athill worked for a London publishing company for approximately fifty years. Athill edited some of the best minds of the post war (WWII) generation, including John Updike, Gitta Sereny, Philip Roth, Jack Kerouac, Norman Mailer, Molly Keane, and George Orwell and many more. During World War II she worked for the BBC.
Athill discusses her life as an editor including her wartime fling with Hungarian expat Andre Deutsch of the Deutsch Ltd. Publishing Company for whom she later worked. This book provides a glimpse inside the world of authors, editors and publishing. Athill is quite candid, funny, witty and astute about her workplace.
I learned a new term while reading this book. I love to learn new words. “Stet” is an editing term. A copy editor wanting to rescue a deletion puts a row of dots under it and writes Stet (let it stand) in the margin.
The book is well written and charming. I would assume that the bibliophiles would be the major purchasers of this book. The book is about seven hours long and the narrator Jan Cramer does an excellent job.
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