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Due Justice

November 23, 1986

The Los Angeles Times Book Prize winner of the distinguished Robert Kirsch Award does due justice to both the careers of the awardee, Kay Boyle, and the namesake, Robert Kirsch, a monumental Times Book reviewer.

Boyle's short stories appeared in Story Magazine, birthplace of the publishing life of many budding authors.

In the early '40s, I worked for Story's two founders, Whit Burnett and Martha Foley, in their manuscript reader's mill in New York.

Hugh Ford's thoroughness with Boyle's life (The Book Review, Nov. 9) motivated me to pull from my bookshelves "This Is My Best in the Third Quarter of the Century" (1970), a compilation by Burnett. Prefacing Boyle's entry story, "The Wild Horses" (1966), Burnett wrote, ". . . I chose this story for the present collection because it is essentially about young people and about the terrible critical problems disturbing and destroying young people who are alive today. Year after year at college, I become more deeply involved with young men and young women who seek to follow the various signs and stars and tides and winds which will guide them to all they wish to be."

Go read Kay Boyle, young and old!


San Bernardino

Editor's Note. Kay Boyle, winner of the 1986 Robert Kirsch Award, has sent The Times a long, appreciative letter in which, however, she corrects one error in Hugh Ford's essay on her (Book Review, Nov. 9). She was, she writes, "never 'suspended' from my position as tenured professor at San Francisco State or anywhere else."

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