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THE MARKET BELL
(Reprinted by Faber Finds)
DESCENTS OF MEMORY
A GLASTONBURY ROMANCE REVISITED
JOHN COWPER POWYS AND THE SOUL
A BIBLIOGRAPHY OF
The Brothers Percival
by Richard Powys Graves
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"A genius - a fearless writer, who writes with reckless passion." - Margaret Drabble on John Cowper Powys
“The one author I could not live without is John Cowper Powys” – Bernard Cornwell
“ … why not read John Cowper Powys instead of the pretentious and tedious D H Lawrence?” – Simon Heffer
"Powys evoked the English landscape with an almost sexual intensity. Hardy comes to mind, but a Hardy drunk and feverish with mystical exuberance." - Philip Pullman on John Cowper Powys
"Llewelyn Powys is one of those rare writers who teach endurance of life as well as its enjoyment." - Philip Larkin
"T. F. Powys, that master of rural understatement whose wry humour and warmth, and whose marvellous narrational 'pull', are irresistible." - Ronald Blythe
"Theodore Powys wrote extraordinary fables of English country life. Bloomsbury admirers hailed them as the singular works of a dark and brooding genius." - P. Wright
"Theodore Powys, the brother of Llewelyn, is a rare person." - T. E. Lawrence
"For when we talk of the Powyses, either individually or as a group, we do not speak of personalities merely, for their various works and characters interact with those of their readers and create new realms of experience. To adapt Auden's poem 'Edward Lear', they have become a land, and those who explore it can appropriate to themselves what they find there. To that extent they themselves are witness to the Powys mystique and may justifiably feel grateful for their citizenship of this complex and endlessly accommodating province of the corporate literary imagination."
From That Goblin Race: The Powys Family Mystique by Glen Cavaliero (The Powys Journal Vol. XIX )
The fifty-six page Powys Society Newsletter No 77 (Nov 2012) has been issued to all members.
NEW Additions to Webliography
“In books dwell all the demons and all the angels of the human mind. It is for this reason that a bookshop — especially a second-hand bookshop / antiquarian — is an arsenal of explosives, an armoury of revolutions, an opium den of reaction.” — John Cowper Powys
“She would wish that far stranger weddings happened in the world than anything that she saw or heard of at Madder. She needed much more than plain Madder life to interest her —some events more like a proceeding that had happened in a book of fables that she had once read, where a little mouse wished to be joined in holy wedlock with a lioness, who, unluckily going out to meet her little dear before the wedding, chanced to set her foot upon him.” — T.F. Powys
"No sight that the human eyes can look upon is more provocative of awe than is the night sky scattered thick with stars.” — Llewelyn Powys
Wall plaque at High West Street, Dorchester, Dorset
‘NATURE FROM THE START HAS MADE ME AN ACTOR’
There has always been, by his own admission, a touch of the theatrical about John Cowper Powys: 'There is no use trying to conceal the fact', he wrote in the Autobiography, 'that Nature from the start had made me an actor.'
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[Oliver Wilkinson was an actor, director, playwright, and lecturer. His parents, the author Louis Wilkinson and poet Frances Gregg, were close friends of the Powys family. In 1994 Oliver, assisted by his son, Christopher, edited the letters exchanged between his mother and John Cowper Powys, Oliver's godfather.]
"The realm of John Cowper Powys is dangerous. The reader may wander for years in this parallel universe, entrapped and bewitched, and never reach its end. There is always another book to discover, another work to reread. Like Tolkien, Powys has invented another country, densely peopled, thickly forested, mountainous, erudite, strangely self-sufficient. This country is less visited than Tolkien's, but it is as compelling, and it has more air." - Margaret Drabble
“(T.F.) Powys’ prose is a strange mix of aphoristic religious argot, abstracted dreamscape, grammatically non-standard expression and hallucinatory horror that calls to mind modern Dadaoist writers like Michael Cisco or Thomas Ligotti far more than any of Powys’ own 1930’s contemporaries. Yet counterpointed against this arch and affected style is a lyrical romanticising of the rural and bucolic English countryside that’s almost Thomas Hardy-esque, both in its nature-heavy descriptions and its eagerness to present a countryside that’s at once beautiful and wild; sacrosanct and carnal. And if that’s not weird enough for you, wait until you encounter the book’s supporting cast: a woman who thinks she’s a camel, a man who’s transferred his libido into a line of nut trees, and a priest who convinces women to become prostitutes, only to spend hours reading Jane Austen to them in an attempt to curtail their wickedness.” - tomcat in the red room
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