Most of the stories and sketches in this collection were written in the years between the publication of Katherine Mansfield’s first book, “In a German Pension,” in 1911 and the publication of her second, “Bliss and other Stories,” in 1920. There are a few exceptions. The first story, The Tiredness of Rosabel, was written in 1908 when Katherine Mansfield was nineteen years old, and the three stories following also were written before “In a German Pension” was published: while Sixpence and Poison were written after Bliss had appeared. Sixpence was excluded from “The Garden–Party and Other Stories” by Katherine Mansfield because she thought it “sentimental”; Poison was excluded because I thought it was not wholly successful. I have since changed my mind: it now seems to me a little masterpiece.
I have no doubt that Katherine Mansfield, were she still alive, would not have suffered some of these stories to appear. When she was urged to allow “In a German Pension” to be republished, she would always reply: “Not now; not yet — not until I have a body of work done and it can be seen in perspective. It is not true of me now: I am not like that any more. When the time for a collected edition comes —” she would end, laughing. The time has come.
The stories are arranged in chronological order.
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