London: Published by Leonard and Virginia Woolf at the Hogarth Press, 52 Tavistock Square, 1932. First Edition. Hardcover. First Impression ('First Published 1932' on copyright page), one of only 1,222 copies. Publisher's first-state pale pink linen lettered in blue, brown top edge; in mid-brown illustrated dust jacket (designed by Jack Banting), printed in blue and priced 7/6. Just about Fine (front hinge very slightly cracked, end papers lightly spotted), in a pristine jacket. Woolmer 294. Fine- / Very Fine. Item #BB1033
According to the Literary Encyclopedia, the death of Isherwood’s father in the First World War and the deep, lifelong mourning into which his mother fell provide much of the background for the family dynamics of Isherwood's early novels, including The Memorial, in which Cambridge student Eric Vernon finds himself torn between a desire to emulate his heroic father and his envy for his father’s great friend Edward Blake, who survived the war only to throw himself into gay life in Berlin and the pursuit of meaningless relationships. The story is imbued with Freudian family analysis, centering on the conflict between mother and son, and rebellion against the stifling English class society (Isherwood was born onto a withering branch of a distinguished family tree that had roots in Cheshire extending back to the Civil War). In his early career Isherwood adopted the high-Modernist style of the preceding generation of English novelists, particularly Virginia Woolf (whose Hogarth Press brought out The Memorial) and D. H. Lawrence. While breaking no new stylistic ground, Isherwood was experimenting with the novel form, recombining the chapters of The Memorial into a non-sequential chronology. Note: With few exceptions (always identified), we only stock books in exceptional condition, with dust jackets carefully preserved in archival, removable polypropylene sleeves. All orders are packaged with care and posted promptly. Satisfaction guaranteed.