LOVE IN THE BLITZEILEEN ALEXANDER Book Number: 91610 Product format: Hardback
Sub-titled 'The Greatest Lost Love Letters of the Second World War', Eileen Alexander graduated in 1939 with a brilliant First Class degree in English from Girton College, Cambridge. Her subsequent accident in a car driven by her future husband, Gershon Ellenbogen, begins the correspondence and their love affair. There were approximately 1,400 of these letters, written almost daily, covering the years 1939 to 1947. Eileen became a noted teacher, writer and translator, especially of George Simenon's Maigret books. Her husband who was in the RAF in WW2 worked for British Military Intelligence in Cairo. With war brewing in 1939, Eileen wrote her first letter from her hospital bed, the first in this book after the car accident: 'Monday 17th July Gershon - what everyone seems to have forgotten is that if I hadn't asked you to drive me to London that Tuesday, you would never have had your arm broken and your life thoroughly disorganised for a considerable period of time. Furthermore if I had directed you rightly we'd never have got into that damned death trap of a side-road.' Her letters are vibrant, intimate, joyous, dark, angry, obsessive, neurotic, generous, scurrilous and very, very funny by turns and speak of the remarkable woman who wrote them. She is frank about sex and her ambitions, hilariously caustic about colleagues, rationing rules and life on the home front, and painfully honest about loving a man away at war. A magical literary find, condensed into one superb heavyweight volume of 474pp with 16 pages of archive b/w photos. 2020 first edition.
Published price: £20
Bibliophile price: £7.00