- Hardcover: 176 pages
- Publisher: Granta Books (October 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1862074844
- ISBN-13: 978-1862074842
- Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.6 x 0.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,216,341 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Yesterday Morning Hardcover – October, 2002
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"Delectable...her honesty shines through, giving a wondrous clarity to this warm yet sharp depiction of childhood." --Sunday Times -- Sunday Times, London
"Her valedictory memoir is a revelation." -- Peter Terzian, Newsday, New York
"Like a really good apple: crisp, juicy, at once sweet and tart. . . voice that combines delighted immediacy and ironic distance." -- New York Times Book Review
Remarkable for its truthfulness...Athill writes with such skill and wit...a vivid picture of childhood in a distant world." -- Spectator
About the Author
Diana Athill was born in 1917. She worked for the BBC during the Second World War and then helped Andre Deutsch establish the company that bore his name. For nearly five decades she edited some of the most celebrated writers in the English language until her retirement in 1993. She lives in Primrose Hill, North London.
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Top Customer Reviews
I greatly enjoyed her 2004 Desert Island Discs interview on the BBC that I found on Google.
But, far and away, "Somewhere Towards the End," her candid look at what growing old is really like, written at age 91, remains my favorite. I particularly remember her promising she'd give up her car keys the year she turned 80. only to discover on getting there, that that's also the age when your feet give out, And arriving at the realization that those who exit this life with relative ease almost always have a devoted daughter attached to make it so (something she and I both lack.)
This little 169-page memoir of an upperclass British childhood begins and ends with a "Now" chapter. The "Then" chapters look into her parents' miserably unhappy marriage. The ghost in the night nursery. Taking class too much for granted to question it, then discovering that smugness, while formidable, was not quite leak-proof. Falling in love for the first time at the age of 11, only to find that by age 12 she already loved someone else and was thus, alas, fickle! Her mother's admission that she'd once done something both daring and vulgar: she'd smiled back at a man on the street who'd smiled at her. Her brother Andrew suffering his way through the miserable British upper class tradition of shipping their sons off to boarding school at the age of 8. The angst of seeing her fiance go off to war. Then getting jilted by same. And, of course, coming from a family in which everyone found books one of life's main sources of pleasure.
She is a clear, forthright writer whose writing is pervaded by a kind of aesthetic grace.