From the Foreword By Philip Dossick:
The thrill of reading Virginia Woolf’s Jacob’s Room is the feeling of looking into a whirlpool just as something utterly extraordinary and unexpected materializes for the first time.
It is so for all her novels.
The language itself dazzles: vivid, evocative, poetic language, that challenges the best of James Joyce, with Woolf's gift for inner dialogue—the lies her characters relentlessly tell themselves—which in turn reveal them to us.
Jacob’s Room has it all: life, death, and the evanescence of time. Love, fear, solitude, and death again—the subjects float by like parasols in autumnal twilight. Her characters are strikingly real. Nothing much happens; yet in the tragic futility, the absurdity, the divine pathos, the delicate beauty of contemplation, all of life happens.
Jacob’s Room is one of Virginia Woolf’s rare and genuine masterpieces; an enchanting work of artistry deserving of the label in a thousand different ways. It can be found on countless lists of the finest novels of the 20th century, and is one of Virginia Woolf's major achievements. It is considered one of her greatest works after Mrs. Dalloway and To The Lighthouse.
VIRGINIA WOOLF (1882-1941), one of the greatest authors of the twentieth century, transformed the art of fiction. The author of numerous novels and short stories, she was also an acknowledged master of the essay form, and an admired literary critic.