- Zackheim, Michele
Riverhead Books, New York, 1996, Cloth, , First Edition, First Printing, ISBN 1573220361 , Fine /Near Fine
213 pp. Very Light rubbing to dj. Violette's Embrace is Zackheim's first book. Zackhiem is the author of Einstein's daughter : the search for Lieserl (1999). 'I flew to Paris to find a dead writer. On the airplane, in the bag on my lap, I carried a lilac-colored copy of La Batarde. It was tattered and underlined, with red wrappings from chopsticks marking the pages. Many years ago I had found this used copy in an old bookstore on Broadway. The writer, Violette Leduc, wrote on an edge that reminded me of myself. I bought it for a dollar and devoured it forever.' 'De Beauvoir tried to help Violette. She begged, then threatened to move her own writings to another publisher, but nothing worked. ''Certain scenes were considered unpublishable,'' de Beauvoir said, ''althought they were no more daring than many others that had been printed; it was just that the erotic object in this case was a women and not a man, which to the Gallimard readers was an outrage.'' The same publisher had published Genet's Funeral Rites in 1953. His erotic material was just as vivid as Violette's, yet he was considered germane. . . . I could find nothing as vulgar in any of Violette's works. Her writing about sensuality was exactly the opposite: ''The veil brushed at the sole of my foot, the fingers turned in thick white sun, a velvet flame withered in my legs. . . . I had been brushed by the scarf of madness that has no end, I had been caressed, yet also milled to dust, by a cramp of pleasure.'' '