‘I think I’m an oddity really, but I do my very, very best to write well’
We’re very pleased to announce that Look Back with Love by Dodie Smith is now available in a cloth-bound hardback Plain Foxed Edition. These sturdy little books, bound in duck-egg blue cloth, come in the same neat pocket format as the original SF Editions.
In her preface to this edition, Dodie Smith’s biographer Valerie Grove describes Look Back with Love as ‘one of the happiest and funniest accounts of an Edwardian upbringing’.
And indeed it is. Best known for her first novel I Capture the Castle, for the evergreen The Hundred and One Dalmatians, and for Dear Octopus, her play set at a family reunion, Dodie did not publish this account of her early life until she was 78. Brought up among her mother’s family, Dodie spent her childhood surrounded by doting adults. It was the jolliest environment imaginable – the Furbers adored seaside trips, motor-car outings, fairgrounds, circuses, jokes, charades and musical soirées. Above all they loved the theatre, and it was through her bachelor uncles’ involvement in amateur dramatics that she conceived her passion for the stage.
Her memoir gives a wonderful picture of this large extended family and of life at that time in the ‘basking Sunday afternoon charm’ of Manchester’s Victorian suburbs. And of the funny, complicated, creative little girl who would later say of herself ‘I think I’m an oddity really, but I do my very, very best to write well’ – which in Look Back with Love she certainly did.
We do hope you’re tempted to add Look Back with Love to your collection. You’ll find links to the book below, together with a selection of other tempting titles and offers.
With best wishes, as ever, from the SF office staff
Jennie, Anna, Hattie & Jess