The letters is this volume cover the eighteen months katherine Mansfield spent in England, France, and Switzerland from May 1920 to the end of 1921. It is the period of her finest stories, and when her life took its most decisive turn. There is a subtle but unmistakable change in herexpectations, a new 'spiritual' insistence that is both elusive and resolute. From her Chekovian acceptance that 'they are cutting down the cherry trees' she derives a tough existential directness: 'the little boat enters the dark, fearful gulf...Nobody listens. The shadowy figure rows on. Oneought to sit still and uncover one's eyes.' There is a determined push - not always successful - towards a necessary honesty, as much as to artistic achievement; while those qualities of her earlier correspondence remain undiminished - the precision and directness, the intelligence and wit, thedark incisiveness as much as sheer fun. Above all, perhaps, these letters comprise a record of very considerable courage, against increasingly adverse odds, as they approach the final years of her life.