Books: The Titan at Home

THE LETTERS OF BEETHOVEN (1,489 pp.) —Emily Anderson—St. Martin's Press ($40).

Ludwig van Beethoven has always been a favorite example of the artist as superman. Here was a genius who behaved like one: noble, solitary, brooding and eccentric. A titan pitted against fate, said his admirers, as they listened to what they thought was fate in the Fifth Symphony. But Beethoven's letters reveal a man pitted not so much against fate as against servants, publishers, a nephew and a sister-in-law. This new volume, the largest (1,570) collection of his letters to date, was assembled by Emily Anderson, who spent 15 years gathering...

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