James Kidd

‘Every Day of my Life is Like a Page’

A Humument: A Treated Victorian Novel

By

Thames & Hudson 384pp £14.95 order from our bookshop

Virginia Woolf detailed the ‘rigours of composition’ in Orlando: ‘how he wrote and it seemed good; read and it seemed vile; corrected and tore up; cut out; put in; was in ecstasy; in despair; … saw his book plain before him and it vanished’. These words could describe the forty-six-year existence of Tom Phillips’s idiosyncratic and ever-evolving masterpiece, A Humument. Conceived in 1966, its first edition was delivered in 1973, since when there have been three revised editions. A shiny new fifth edition has just seen the light of day, both as a physical book and as an app for iPhone and iPad.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter