'Every Day of my Life is Like a Page' A Humument: A Treated Victorian Novel By Tom Phillips (Thames & Hudson 384pp £14.95)
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.