Leon (Joseph) Edel Quentin Anderson - Essay

Quentin Anderson

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

The last of Leon Edel's five volumes, "Henry James, The Master: 1901–1916," has appeared, and those who have, since the publication of the first volume in 1953, enjoyed his skilfully managed unfolding of the novelist's career may simply be assured that the climaxes of this period [are] … all properly scaled to give them their accustomed pleasures, in a prose tone which has a perceptibly, though not disproportionately, greater touch of magniloquence than that of earlier volumes. There is not much to startle anyone—Edel has fewer unexpected observations to offer than are to be found in the fourth volume…. The only element in the fifth volume which might provoke uneasiness is the use of passages from James's...

(The entire section is 2030 words.)