Volume 1 goes through the nineteenth century, and volume two presents writers from the twentieth century onwards. Within each volume, it is alphabetic. Each volume contains an “Author’s timeline” and an index of authors, titles and some themes (eg, feminism). The typical entries document author’s dates, writing genres, major life events and significant works, followed by quotations from other author’s works or about him. Many entries include a critical analysis section that provides an evaluative discussion of the body of work produced. The criteria for the longest entries are the perceptions of the editors on the size of the readers, the quality of the critical and academic interest, and the impact on other writers. It is not clear, given this criterion, why Beatrix Potter, but not more J. K. Rowling, should have a critical analysis section. The strengths of this work, as in the original edition and the complementary encyclopedia, are the quality of the writing and the breadth of coverage. The entries are attractive and provide enough content to give readers a basic understanding of each writer’s life and work. The high school, the university and the public libraries will find it a very useful resource. Also available as an e-book. –Ynthia Crosser
“The writing is clear and direct …”
. ,. “recommended for public or secondary libraries”.
“The writing is uniformly clear and free of jargon … Recommended …”
. ,. “well written … this two-volume set is a gold mine of useful knowledge.”
. ,. “Excellent … combines impressive coverage and satisfying content depth … Highly recommended.”