Between the Sheets, By Lesley McDowell Duckworth


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The exploration of nine affairs between equally eminent writers is such a whizz-bang idea that you wonder why no one did it before.

McDowell's book was sparked by a fling with a fellow novelist, who "thought I was a really good writer." Hence her insights into Sartre/Beauvoir and why "keeping Gellhorn away from the secrets of his fiction was perhaps Hemingway's way of holding on to power over her".

This diorama of literary passion concludes: "It is unpalatable to those who blame Hughes for Plath's death to acknowledge him as any kind of champion... But unpalatability doesn't make it any less true."