The Enormous Room by E. E. Cummings

The Enormous Room (The Green-Eyed Stores) is a 1922 autobiographical novel by the poet and novelist E. E. Cummings about his temporary imprisonment in France during World War I. Cummings served as an ambulance driver during the war. In late August 1917 his friend and colleague, William Slater Brown (known in the book only as B.), was arrested by French authorities as a result of anti-war sentiments B. had expressed in some letters. When questioned, Cummings stood by his friend and was also arrested. While Cummings was in captivity at La Ferté-Macé, his father received an erroneous letter to the effect that his son had been lost at sea. The cable was later rescinded, but the subsequent lack of information on his son's whereabouts left the elder Cummings distraught. Meanwhile, Cummings and B. had the bad luck to be transported to La Ferté only five days after the local commissioners in charge of reviewing cases for trial and pardon had left – and the commissioners were not expected back until November. When they finally did arrive, they agreed to allow Cummings, as an official "suspect", a supervised release in the remote commune of Oloron-Sainte-Marie. B. was ordered to be transferred to a prison in Précigné. Before Cummings was to depart, he was unconditionally released from La Ferté due to U.S. diplomatic intervention. He arrived in New York City on January 1, 1918. Cummings thus spent over four months in the prison. He met a number of interesting characters and had many picaresque adventures, which he compiled into The Enormous Room. The book is written as a mix between Cummings' well-known unconventional grammar and diction and the witty voice of a young Harvard-educated intellectual in an absurd situation. The title of the book refers to the large room where Cummings slept beside thirty or so other prisoners. However, it also serves as an allegory for Cummings' mind and his memories of the prison – such that when he describes the many residents of his shared cell, they still live in the "enormous room" of his mind. F. Scott Fitzgerald extended praise to the book, saying "Of all the work by young men who have sprung up since 1920 one book survives—The Enormous Room by e e cummings... Those few who cause books to live have not been able to endure the thought of its mortality."

The 1076th greatest fiction book of all time

This book is on the following lists:

  1. - 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (The Book)

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Name Binding Sales Rank Lowest New Lowest Used Published
The Enormous Room (New Edition) Paperback 3390148 $4.97 $3.99 2014
The Enormous Room Paperback 4869304 $6.60 2013
The Enormous Room (Classic, 20th-Century, Penguin) Paperback 3581010 $12.58 $1.77 1999
The Enormous Room Paperback 1097412 $6.99 2020
The Enormous Room Paperback 7765328 $12.99 $869.56 2015
The Enormous Room (Classic, 20th-Century, Penguin) Publisher: Penguin Classics Paperback 3607232 $9.54 $3.97
The Enormous Room (Warbler Classics) Paperback 1905827 $12.95 2021
The Enormous Room Paperback 1236101 $5.99 $4.00 2015
The Enormous Room Kindle Edition 561254 $3.99 2021
The Enormous Room Kindle Edition 556622 $3.99 2021
The Enormous Room (The Cummings Typescript Editions) Paperback 3870029 $7.90 $1.51 1994
The Enormous Room Paperback 1278852 $9.95 2020
The Enormous Room Audible Audiobook 69291 $23.95 2015
The Enormous Room Paperback 4299814 $8.99 $4.99 2014
The Enormous Room Enormous (Classic Reprint) Paperback 3007655 $13.57 $47.92 2016
A Guide for Using The Enormous Egg in the Classroom Paperback 4577404 $12.99 $5.98 2000
Sinbad: Through Time and Space & The Enormous Room Paperback 4969974 $12.95 2016
The Enormous Room [with Biographical Introduction] Kindle Edition 564416 2004
The Enormous Room: Modern Library No. 214 Hardcover 3337809 $41.70 $5.48 1949
The Enormous Room Paperback 3732001 $11.60 $20.08 2013
THE ENORMOUS ROOM. With an Introduction by the Author. Hardcover 4523400 $4.20
The Enormous Room (Xist Classics) Kindle Edition 699648 2016
The Enormous Room: A Glossary of Characters and Other Terms Paperback 15171072 $5.50 2014
The Enormous Room: A Glossary of Characters and Other Terms Kindle Edition 1261539 2013
The Enormous Room Paperback 4262283 $7.72 2015
The Enormous Room Hardcover 5698122 $25.95 $31.05 2015
The Enormous Room (New Edition) Kindle Edition 1345516 2014
The Enormous Room Hardcover 4312004 $30.99 $5.49 2008
The Enormous Room: Annotated edition with author’s biography and introduction Kindle Edition 2034851 $2.99 2020
The Enormous Room;With an Introductory Poem by Anne Brontë Paperback 1118182 $19.99 2022
The ENORMOUS ROOM. Modern Library No. 214. Hardcover 4633839 $30.67
The Enormous Room Hardcover 1100940 $25.95 $15.00 2017
The Enormous Room Kindle Edition 229200 2019
The Enormous Room (Dover Thrift Editions: Classic Novels) Kindle Edition 341345 $0.99 2012
The Enormous Room Kindle Edition 1652142 2019
The Enormous Room Paperback 1025190 $10.99 $6.50 2015
The Enormous Room Kindle Edition 44465 $2.99 2020
The Enormous Room (Dover Thrift Editions: Classic Novels) Paperback 1012124 $5.00 $1.35 2002
The Enormous Room (Classic, 20th-Century, Penguin) Kindle Edition 1488286 1999