The Blue Flower by Penelope Fitzgerald, 1st/1st, 1995
This is a fine copy of Penelope Fitzgerald's 'The Blue Flower' in first edition, first printing. 1995, London. The jacket is without visible shelf wear, has not been price clipped and without any discolouration. The text blocks are clean, free from foxing and are unmarked. The boards are unmarked, unchipped and overall in fine condition. Overall this is a fine copy.
In 1794 the 22 year old von Hardenberg becomes mystically attracted to the 12-year-old Sophie von Kühn, an unlikely choice for an intellectual of noble birth given Sophie's age and lack of education and culture, as well as her physical plainness and negligible material prospects. The couple become engaged a year later but never marry as Sophie dies of consumption a few days after her 15th birthday.
The blue flower of the novel's title is the subject of the first chapter of a story that von Hardenberg is writing. In it, a young man longs to see the blue flower that "lies incessantly at his heart, so that he can imagine and think about nothing else". Von Hardenberg reads his draft chapter to Sophie and others, and asks "what is the meaning of this blue flower?" No definitive answer is given within the novel, leaving the reader to provide his or her own interpretation.
Winner of the 1997 National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction
Winner of the 1997 New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year