Once, during an interview, Lillian Hellman (who was very well-known for her quick wit, candour and often-biting cynicism) was asked what she was made of - To which she flatly replied - "Pickling spice and nothing nice."
In "An Unfinished Woman" Lillian Hellman (who is considered to be the most famous female playwright of her era) recalls, with vivid clarity, the highlights of her earlier life, which includes some very eye-opening anecdotes of her close association with famed novelist, Ernest Hemingway, as well as the years she spent in Europe while WW2 raged on.
Unfortunately, what Hellman didn't go into great detail about in "An Unfinished Woman" was her 30-year, on-again/off-again relationship with famous, American, writer, Dashiell Hammet.
To my disappointment - Hellman kept any of her intimate recollections of Hammet (who drank himself to death) strictly on the surface and never got down to the real nitty-gritty of this somewhat curious alliance between them.
*Note* - Born in 1905, Hellman published "An Unfinished Woman" in 1969, eight years after Dashiell Hammet's death. A chronic cigarette smoker all of her adult life, Hellman died from lung cancer in 1984 at the age of seventy-nine.
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