The Life and Loves of E Nesbit

Sarah Watling at The Guardian:

It’s not just that Nesbit’s books are brilliant: her life is also brilliant material for one. She was in person at once quite awe-inspiring and a bit of a nightmare, able to weather tragedy and yet a queen of melodrama, a self-supporting writer who opposed women’s suffrage. Vibrantly attractive and adored by her many proteges and readers, she was what they called in those days “advanced” – a committed socialist (she and her husband Hubert Bland were among the earliest members of the Fabian Society) who wore free-flowing clothes, gave charitably and wrote ferociously against poverty, and let her children play barefoot in the garden. Her home at Well Hall, in Eltham, was a lively hub for young writers, artists and Fabians; a place, HG Wells recalled, “to which one rushed down from town at the week-end to snatch one’s bed before anyone else got it”. She was generous with her time, her money and her husband.

more here.