Google full text of our books:


A Reader's Guide to Wallace Stevens
Eleanor Cook

A Book of the Week

Paperback | 2009 | $35.00 | £27.95 | ISBN: 9780691141084
368 pp. | 6 x 9
Add to Shopping Cart

eBook | ISBN: 9781400827640 |
Our eBook editions are available from these online vendors

Reviews | Table of Contents
Chapter 1[PDF] pdf-icon

Google full text of this book:

Wallace Stevens is one of the major poets of the twentieth century, and also among the most challenging. His poems can be dazzling in their verbal brilliance. They are often shot through with lavish imagery and wit, informed by a lawyer's logic, and disarmingly unexpected: a singing jackrabbit, the seductive Nanzia Nunzio. They also spoke--and still speak--to contemporary concerns. Though his work is popular and his readership continues to grow, many readers encountering it are baffled by such rich and strange poetry.

Eleanor Cook, a leading critic of poetry and expert on Stevens, gives us here the essential reader's guide to this important American poet. Cook goes through each of Stevens's poems in his six major collections as well as his later lyrics, in chronological order. For each poem she provides an introductory head note and a series of annotations on difficult phrases and references, illuminating for us just why and how Stevens was a master at his art. Her annotations, which include both previously unpublished scholarship and interpretive remarks, will benefit beginners and specialists alike. Cook also provides a brief biography of Stevens, and offers a detailed appendix on how to read modern poetry.

A Reader's Guide to Wallace Stevens is an indispensable resource and the perfect companion to The Collected Poems of Wallace Stevens, first published in 1954 in honor of Stevens's seventy-fifth birthday, as well as to the 1997 collection Wallace Stevens: Collected Poetry and Prose.


"In contrast to guides that provide long, involved commentaries, Cook's incisiveness and brevity are impressive--she sheds light without forcing her interpretation."--Nancy R. Ives,

"A Reader's Guide to Wallace Stevens is a solid reference work that will help open doors for a wide variety of readers. It will be especially useful to instructors who are beginning to teach Stevens, providing them with sources, analogues, translations, and other materials that will help students connect with Stevens' work with ease and pleasure."--Janet McCann, The Wallace Stevens Journal

"Although the biographical and critical literature on this demanding modern American poet is extensive, this is a valuable and rich addition to that literature. Cook provides short paragraphs about the poems, each preceded by the poem's publication history. When more than one version of the poem exists, she provides necessary and interesting information about variations."--B. Wallenstein, Choice

"A Reader's Guide to Wallace Stevens is designed for all these types of Stevens's readers--the knowledgeable, the studious, the enthusiastic, the occasional, the curious, the baffled but persistent at all levels."--William Baker, Library Review

"Cook's annotated catalogue of Stevens's gaudy particulars is, like her other recent book on riddle and enigma, mesmerizing . . . . The section-by-section analyses of Stevens's longer poems are invaluable. . . . All the individual glosses . . . are, where relevant, cross-referenced to one another, giving the effect of diagonal threads running under the whole of Stevens's published work. . . . These intra-Stevensian echoes are placed side by side with allusions to literary, philosophical, and biblical history, so that what you end up with is a version of world literature in which Stevens is always nearby, like some exotic common denominator."--Paul Grimstad, Yale Review

More reviews

Table of Contents:


Biography 1

Harmonium 29
Ideas of Order 87
The Man with the Blue Guitar 112
Parts of a World 132
Transport to Summer 171
The Auroras of Autumn 237
"The Rock" 279
Late Poems 298


Another Princeton book authored or coauthored by Eleanor Cook:

Subject Areas:

Shopping Cart options:

  • For ebooks:

Our eBook editions are available
from these online vendors:

  • Amazon Kindle Store
  • Apple iBooks
  • Barnes & Noble Nook Store
  • Google Play eBook Store
  • Kobo eBook Store
  • Many of our ebooks are available through
    library electronic resources including these platforms:

  • Books at JSTOR
  • Ebrary
  • Ebook Library
  • EBSCO Ebooks
  • MyiLibrary
  • Dawsonera (UK)

    • For hardcover/paperback orders in United States, Canada, Latin America, Asia, and Australia

     Paperback : $35.00 ISBN: 9780691141084

    Add to shopping cart
    View contents of your shopping cart

    • For hardcover/paperback orders in Europe, Africa, the Middle East, India, and Pakistan

     Paperback  £27.95 ISBN: 9780691141084

    Add to shopping cart
    View contents of your shopping cart

    Prices subject to change without notice

    File created: 4/20/2017

    Questions and comments to:
    Princeton University Press

    New Book E-mails
    New In Print
    PUP Blog
    Princeton APPS
    Sample Chapters
    Princeton Legacy Library
    Exam/Desk Copy
    Recent Awards
    Princeton Shorts
    Freshman Reading
    PUP Europe
    About Us
    Contact Us
    PUP Home

    Bookmark and Share 
    Send me emails
    about new books in:
    Comparative Literature
    American Literature
    More Choices