To Room Nineteen

Doris Lessing

For more than four decades, Doris Lessing’s work has observed the passion and confusion of human relations, holding a mirror up to our selves in her unflinching dissection of the everyday. From the magnificent ‘To Room Nineteen’, a study of a dry, controlled middle-class marriage ‘grounded in intelligence’, to the shocking ‘A Woman on the Roof’, where a workman becomes obsessed with a pretty sunbather, this superb collection of stories written over four decades, from the 1950s to the 1990s, bears stunning witness to Doris Lessing’s perspective on the human condition.

Reviews of To Room Nineteen

    • ‘The stories in “To Room Nineteen” are part of the intellectual apparatus of anybody alive in England in the Fifties. I can’t begin to evaluate some of them objectively; “The Habit of Loving” and the dazzlingly cynical “One Off The Shortlist” shaped the way I, for one, perceived the world.’ Angela Carter, Guardian
    • ‘A major collection – rich, perceptive and cruelly honest. For Doris Lessing, private lives, private sins and private blisses are aspects of history, so that even in short stories, she is a chronicler of her time and its conscience too.’ Lorna Sage, Observer
    • ‘On sex, Doris Lessing has few equals in understanding not only desire, but the rest – boredom, disappointment, erotic fury. On every subject there is a selfless, composed quality about her writing, a special combination of indignation and compassion.’ Diane Johnson, New York Times

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