The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone

Front Cover
New Directions Publishing, 1993 - Fiction - 111 pages
14 Reviews
Published in 1950, his first novel was acclaimed by Gore Vidal as "Splendidly written, precise, short, complete and fine."

It is the story of a wealthy, fiftyish American widow, recently a famous stage beauty, but now "drifting." The novel opens soon after her husband's death and her retirement from the theatre, as Mrs. Stone tries to adjust to her aimless new life in Rome. She is adjusting, too, to aging ("The knowledge that her beauty was lost had come upon her recently and it was still occasionally forgotten.") With poignant wit and his own particular brand of relish, Williams charts her drift into an affair with a cruel young gigolo: "As compelling, as fascinating, and as technically skilled as his plays." (Publishers Weekly)
  

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
2
4 stars
9
3 stars
2
2 stars
1
1 star
0

Review: The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone

User Review  - Benjamin Laubacher - Goodreads

Tennessee Williams only Novel: The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone is a long-winded and boring piece of prose. My only advice to Mr. Williams would have been: Stick to your genre sir, unless you want to make a fool out of yourself. 2/5 Read full review

Review: The Roman Spring of Mrs. Stone

User Review  - AM - Goodreads

Youth and beauty are everything in the arts and when the famous stage actress, Mrs Stone, turns fifty and foolhardily tries to act as Juliet, the backlash is sufficient for her to leave the stage. She ... Read full review

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (1993)

After O'Neill, Williams is perhaps the best dramatist the United States has yet produced. Born in his grandfather's rectory in Columbus, Mississippi, Williams and his family later moved to St. Louis. There Williams endured many bad years caused by the abuse of his father and his own anguish over his introverted sister, who was later permanently institutionalized. Williams attended the University of Missouri, and, after time out to clerk for a shoe company and for his own mental breakdown, also attended Washington University of St. Louis and the University of Iowa, from which he graduated in 1938. Williams began to write plays in 1935. During 1943 he spent six months as a contract screenwriter for MGM but produced only one script, The Gentleman Caller. When MGM rejected it, Williams turned it into his first major success, The Glass Menagerie (1945). In this intensely autobiographical play, Williams dramatizes the story of Amanda, who dreams of restoring her lost past by finding a gentleman caller for her crippled daughter, and of Amanda's son Tom, who longs to escape from the responsibility of supporting his mother and sister. After The Glass Menagerie,Williams wrote his masterpiece, A Streetcar Named Desire, (1947), along with a steady stream of other plays, among them such major works as Summer and Smoke(1948), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1954), and Suddenly Last Summer (1958). His plays celebrate the "fugitive kind," the sensitive outcasts whose outsider status allows them to perceive the horror of the world and who often give additional witness to that horror by becoming its victims. Stephen S. Stanton has summed up Williams's "virtues and strengths" as "a genius for portraiture, particularly of women, a sensitive ear for dialogue and the rhythms of natural speech, a comic talent often manifesting itself in "black comedy,' and a genuine theatrical flair exhibited in telling stage effects attained through lighting, costume, music, and movements." After The Night of the Iguana (1961), Williams continued to write profusely---and constantly to revise his work---but it became more difficult to get productions of his plays and, if they were produced, to win critical or popular acclaim for them. Williams won the Pulitzer Prize for drama for A Streetcar Named Desire and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. He won the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for these two and for The Glass Menagerie and The Night of the Iguana.

Bibliographic information