The Montana Stories
In 1921 Katherine Mansfield came to Switzerland, to live at the Chalet des Sapins in Montana (seen on the right in a 1913 photograph); she was 32 and seriously ill with tuberculosis, but the next few months were to be the most fruitful of her life - she did not have much time left to her. The Montana Stories contains all the short stories she wrote between July of that year and her death in January 1923.
These short stories have never before been published together with unfinished fragments and extracts from the Letters and Journals from those months, and new and detailed editorial notes; nor have the original illustrations that accompanied the stories' first magazine publication been previously reprinted. But by reading everything in strictly chronological order the reader understands the way a writer of genius forced herself on during this astonishingly creative period.
The critic John Carey chose Katherine Mansfield's short stories as one of his favourite books of the last century: 'Nearly half are set in the New Zealand of her childhood... Though death intrudes in almost every story, melancholy is debarred. The focus is on those starting life, not ending it.'
The fabric is 'Stems and looping tendrils with harebells', designed in 1921 by Constance Irving. We chose it because the delicate blue harebells could be the gentians growing in the mountains; although the background is sombre, the flowers are both pretty and sophisticated.
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