Staying on Alone: Letters of Alice B. Toklas
On tissue-thin paper in a tiny, often undecipherable hand, Alice Toklas described her daily life in Paris in absorbing detail, like a latter-day Madame de Sévigné. Here are shrewd, witty observations on some of the most interesting artists, musicians, and writers of the twentieth century: Thornton Wilder, Carl Van Vechten, Edith Sitwell, Anita Loos, Cecil Beaton, Janet Flanner, Bennett Cerf, among others. There are stories about Picasso, Hemingway, Fitzgerald, Juan Gris, Cocteau, and Sartre--all revealing a sharp eye that was as much a part of Alice as her devotion to Gertrude and her passion for recipes and gardening.
In preparing this collection, the editor has chosen letters of biographical, literary, and artistic significance to an understanding of Gertrude Stein and her circle, letters illustrating the catholicity of Alice Toklas's friendships and the quality of her gifts, and letters that simply delight for their gossip.