Willa Cather’s Many-Colored Medusa of Art: Review of Youth and the Bright Medusa Willa Cather. Historical Essay and Explanatory Notes by Mark J. Madigan. Textual Essay and Editing by Frederick M. Link, Charles W. Mignon, Judith Boss, and Kari A. Ronning.
Date of this Version
Documentary Editing: Journal of the Association for Documentary Editing, Volume 32: 2011 ISSN 0196-7134
The latest edition to the Willa Cather Scholarly Edition series, Youth and the Bright Medusa, is a monument to Cather’s own standards of excellence. The thick paper stock is warm and creamy—the kind of paper that feels smooth and comforting to fingers well used to thumbing the cheap texts that are so common today. The type is large and dark, and the wide margins showcase the text while filling the consummate note-taker’s heart with joy. As the series general editors, Susan J. Rosowski and Guy J. Reynolds, point out in the preface, “[g]iven Cather’s explicitly stated intentions for her works, printing and publishing decisions that disregard her wishes represent their own form of corruption, and an authoritative edition of Cather must go beyond the sequence of the words and punctuation to include other matters” (ix–x). The book itself is lovely, warm, and inviting—all that Cather herself could have wished.