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Ariel: The Restored Edition: A Facsimile of Plath's Manuscript, Reinstating Her Original Selection and Arrangement (Modern Classics) Paperback – Illustrated, March 6, 2018
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“It’s hard to read the original manuscript without trying to understand what Hughes was thinking when he left out certain poems and included others. She loved him. He hurt her. All of us who love her work are caught like children in that crossfire forever.” -- Los Angeles Times
“Illuminating.” -- New York Review of Books
“Made up of poems that are so original in their style and so startlingly accomplished in their confessional voice that they helped change the direction of contemporary poetry, Ariel is a masterpiece.” -- New York Observer
“...the publication of this ‘other’ Ariel will no doubt sustain the Hughes/Plath controversy for years to come, but we can be grateful for the insights provided by this restored edition.” -- Library Journal
“[Frieda] Hughes’ thoughts on her mother’s life and writing offer a calm, tender account of a life that has too often been fodder for sensationalist coverage.” -- Lisa Ko, author of The Leavers
“These are powerful poems, not outtakes and B sides, and if they expose Plath’s personal pain, they also enrich our sense of her state of mind at the height of her powers.” -- Time magazine
“Ariel: The Restored Edition finally puts the focus back where it belongs — on Plath’s poetry.” -- Village Voice
“...a poetic landmark of the decade....a coruscating book, painfully self-revelatory, brimming with a fierce, raw energy.” -- The Economist
“To women who wrote, this work was galvanizing. Sylvia . . . had a fully evolved voice.” -- New York Review of Books
“Frieda Hughes has had the courage to bring her mother back, not as a symbol, but as a poet. Her poems are here and will have the last word. They remain remarkable.” -- New York Review of Books
“Sometimes it takes a long time for a book to reach its readers in the form the writer intended. . . . Ariel: The Restored Edition does the job, and then some.” -- Seattle Times
“...one of the most important books of poetry of the 20th century...” -- Slate
“It’s like a belated gift from Plath to the ‘peanut-crunching crowd’ that follows her every mood, every thought, even many years after her death.” -- Buffalo News
From the Back Cover
Sylvia Plath's famous collection, as she intended it.
When Sylvia Plath died, she not only left behind a prolific life but also her unpublished literary masterpiece, Ariel. When her husband, Ted Hughes, first brought this collection to life, it garnered worldwide acclaim, though it wasn't the draft Sylvia had wanted her readers to see. This facsimile edition restores, for the first time, Plath's original manuscript -- including handwritten notes -- and her own selection and arrangement of poems. This edition also includes in facsimile the complete working drafts of her poem "Ariel," which provide a rare glimpse into the creative process of a beloved writer. This publication introduces a truer version of Plath's works, and will no doubt alter her legacy forever.
This P.S. edition features an extra 16 pages of insights into the book, including author interviews, recommended reading, and more.
- ASIN : 0060732601
- Publisher : Harper Perennial Modern Classics; Reprint edition (March 6, 2018)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 256 pages
- Lexile measure : NP
- Item Weight : 9.5 ounces
- Dimensions : 6 x 0.64 x 9 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #20,507 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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I paid a buck fifty for the paperback "Revised" edition (arranged by Plath's daughter Frieda in an attempt to be more faithful to her mother's arrangement, in contrast to the arrangement by Frieda's father, Ted Hughes), but this is a million dollar book.
The poetry is rich in images, with ominous visions of Nazis and death sharing the pages with bees, puking babies, and other fixtures of domesticity. Plath is playful with language, but sharp and relentless in her deconstruction of the world around her. She does not give any illusion of her life as a mother and wife being a fairy tale ending; she readily admits that suicide is on her mind. So thickly layered are each of her poems, I will gladly reread them all a dozen more times to find more juicy double meanings and commentary tucked away in the lines.
Some of my personal favorite poems were:
Lesbos -- The kitchen is not a holy ground to Sylvia. She enjoys zero time spent with another woman, possibly the mistress who took her husband away, whose grating attitude makes idle chit-chat a living hell.
The Applicant -- "First, are you our sort of person?//Do you wear//A glass eye, false teeth or a crutch,//A brace or a Hook,//Rubber breasts or a rubber crotch" This poem speaks for itself.
Daddy -- Among the most well-known poems from this collection, it devilishly mixes childlike word play with black images of fascism, "The boot in the face, the brute//Brute heart of a brute like you". It reads like a scathing, adult version of Dr. Seuss. I love it.
Just get it already!
Top reviews from other countries
The quote printed above, supposedly from an introduction by Frieda Hughes, is in fact a blurb on the back cover. There is no introduction whatsoever to this edition, from Hughes or anyone else, as was pointed out by Mr Bennett in his review of 25 September, 2018.
I had naively presumed that since Mr Bennett's complaint was more than a year old, it referred to a different edition. It doesn't. The fact that Amazon continues to publish false information more than a year later only serves to emphasize their lack of care and attention.
The poems of Sylvia Plath are beyond any 1-to-5 star assessment. This Faber edition is perfectly adequate and good value for the money.
The one star rating is solely for this Amazon page.
Ariel, her last hurrah is an amazing collection of poetry. It contains some of her best work and some of my favourite pieces.
I love how diverse the poems are in Ariel, the perfect blend of light and dark. The poems are rich in detail, vivid and at times, haunting.
I loved all of the poems but my favourites were The Applicant, Lady Lazarus, Cut, Death & Co and Daddy. Of these Daddy is the best. Daddy may be one of the best poems ever written.