Grove Press is a hardcover and paperback imprint of Grove Atlantic, Inc. Grove Press was founded on Grove Street in New York’s Greenwich Village in 1947. But its true beginning came in 1951 when twenty-eight-year-old Barney Rossett, Jr. bought the company and turned it into one of the most influential publishers of the 1950s, 60s, and 70s. From the outset, Rossett took chances: Grove published many of the Beats including William S. Burroughs, Jack Kerouac, and Allen Ginsberg. In addition, Grove Press became the preeminent publisher of twentieth-century drama in America, publishing the work of Samuel Beckett (Nobel Prize for Literature 1969), Bertold Brecht, Eugene Ionesco, David Mamet (Pulitzer Prize for Drama 1984), Harold Pinter (Nobel Prize for Literature 2005), Tom Stoppard, and many more. The press also introduced to American audiences the work of international authors such as Jorge Luis Borges, Mikhail Bulgakov, Marguerite Duras, Jean Genet, Pablo Neruda, Octavio Paz (Nobel Prize for Literature 1990), Kenzaburo Oe (Nobel Prize for Literature 1994), Elfriede Jelinek (Nobel Prize for Literature 2004), Alain Robbe-Grillet, and Juan Rulfo. In the late 1950s and early 1960s, Barney Rossett challenged the obscenity laws by publishing D. H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover and then Henry Miller’s Tropic of Cancer. His landmark court victories changed the American cultural landscape. Grove Press went on to publish literary erotic classics like The Story of O and ground-breaking gay fiction like John Rechy’s City of Night, as well as the works of the Marquis de Sade. On the political front, Grove Press published classics that include Franz Fanon’s The Wretched of the Earth, The Autobiography of Malcolm X, and Che Guevara’s The Bolivian Diary, among many other titles. In 1986, Barney Rosset sold the company and the press became part of Grove Weidenfeld. In 1993 that company was merged with Atlantic Monthly Press to form Grove Atlantic, Inc.

Since 1993, Grove Press has been both a hardcover and paperback imprint of Grove Atlantic publishing fiction, drama, poetry, literature in translation, and general nonfiction. Authors and titles include Jon Lee Anderson’s Che Guevara: A Revolutionary Life, Robert Olen Butler’s A Good Scent from a Strange Mountain (Pulitzer Prize for Literature 1993), Kiran Desai’s Inheritance of Loss (Man Booker Prize 2006), Richard Flanagan’s Gould’s Book of Fish (Commonwealth Prize 2002), Ismail Kadare’s The Siege, Jerzy Kosinski’s Steps (National Book Award 1969), Jacqueline Susann’s Valley of the Dolls, Nick McDonell’s Twelve, Catherine Millet’s The Sexual Life of Catherine M., Pascal Mercier’s Night Train to Lisbon, Kay Ryan (Poet Laureate of the United States 2008/9) as well as Antonio Lobo Antunes, Will Self, Barry Hannah, Terry Southern, and many others.

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Barry Hannah Long, Last, Happy
Long, Last, Happy

“Barry Hannah is the best fiction writer to appear in the South since Flannery O’Connor.”
Larry Mcmurtry

“Barry Hannah is an original, and one of the most consistently exciting writers of the post-Faulkner generation.”
William Styron, Salon

Click here for more on Barry Hannah and Long, Last, Happy
Forty Thieves by Thomas Perry
Matterhorn by Karl Marlantes
 
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The Temple is a wonderfully immediate and truthful book, and no doubt this is the way it was in Germany and in the lives and thoughts of a significant circle; one can hear the sophisticated adolescent voices arguing far into the night. And The Temple is radiantly and ironically full of the concerns and hopes of youth, of shared literary ideals and ambitions.”—Richard Dyer, The Boston Globe
The Temple
By Stephen Spender
Grove Press
978-0-8021-3524-7 • $16.00 • Paperback • Sep. 1997
Fiction
The story behind this novel by one of twentieth-century Britain’s great poets and men of letters is nearly as remarkable as the book itself. Not long ago, a friend just returned from America told the author that he had read in the Spender manuscript collection of the University of Texas a novel called The Temple and dated 1929. Stephen Spender immediately obtained a copy of his old draft manuscript—admired in the early thirties by his London publisher, but remaining unpublished because of the sensitivity of the contents and fear of libel actions—and read it with astonished pleasure. He then rewrote it in part, taking care not to diminish its ardent youthfulness, its innocence and cynicism, and the immediacy of its view of the last days of Weimar Germany, on the eve of Hitler’s rise to power.

It is, as one might expect, an autobiographical novel. Vividly present along with the protagonist, and not much disguised, are the two other members of the famous triumvirate Auden-Spender-Isherwood. Here are the experiences of a twenty-year-old Oxford poet on vacation in Hamburg, who then travels down the Rhine with two companions. We see his response to the bronzed young Germans—the Children of the Sun—their friendships, parties, sexuality, naturism (especially their cult of the naked body), and all the gauche hedonism that was soon to vanish under the Nazis.

Clearly The Temple is a novel of historical and literary importance. But it is, as well, an entertaining and moving story of a young man’s awakening.

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