A final few words on What there is to say we have said.
I mentioned in that earlier post that I was reading this collection of letters "with great enjoyment, delighting in being in the company of two such lovely, eloquent, interesting people", and that stood throughout the book.
Eudora Welty and William Maxwell corresponded for fifty years, their relationship initially a working one - besides being an acclaimed novelist in his own right, William Maxwell was Eudora Welty's editor at The New Yorker - developing into a close, sustaining, supportive friendship which lasted to the end of their lives. Miss Welty came to look upon Bill, his wife and daughters as almost a second family, and their shared joys, often in simple things, give their letters a warmth and gladness which make them such a pleasure to read.
They discuss books, friends in the literary world, flowers - for both were keen gardeners and especially rose growers - their travels, and daily doings; early letters particularly include Bill's editorial advice which is very carefully considered (do editors these days typically go to such lengths, I wonder), while later ones applaud achievements, and discuss but do not dwell on age, ill health, and loss. Throughout the correspondence there is easy, genuine enthusiasm, keen observation and the writer's eye for telling detail, all coloured by a generous-hearted fellow feeling which means it's with reluctance that you turn the final page. I came away from the book feeling that both parties would have been very fine people to know, and that's saying a lot.
If you love reading letters, if you enjoy literary memoirs, or if you simply like spending time in good company, keep an eye out for this book.