Mirages — 2013

 The Unexpurgated Diary of Anaïs Nin, 1939–1947

By Anaïs Nin
Edited by Paul Herron
Introduction by Kim Krizan

“The celebrated diarist, novelist and electric personality reappears with all the fire of her eroticism in pages untouched by a Bowdler or a Puritan…. Readers will find Nin a most entertaining companion—her multiple simultaneous relationships with men, her gleefully graphic descriptions of sex acts…. In one late entry, Nin complains, mildly: ‘My world is so large I get lost in it’; readers will do the same—and gratefully so.”

Kirkus Reviews

“The reader benefits from (Nin’s) thoughtful, unique perspective on America in the 1940s, as she reinvented herself as a first-class feminist, entrepreneur and a woman with an incredibly erotic daily life, told through sensual and graphic details…. Anaïs Nin’s diaries have become the standard for personal diaries only a few writers could match. The curious reader, seeking graphic details of Nin’s encounters with intimacy won’t be disappointed.”

Blog Critics

“Anaïs Nin (1903–1977) is not only one of history’s most dedicated diarists, but also a vocal expounder of the idea that keeping a diary enhances your creativity…. Mirages (is) revelatory in its entirety.”

Brain Pickings

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Mirages opens at the dawn of World War II, when Anaïs Nin fled Paris, where she lived for fifteen years with her husband, banker Hugh Guiler, and ends in 1947 when she meets the man who would be “the One,” the lover who would satisfy her insatiable hunger for connection. In the middle looms a period Nin describes as “hell,” during which she experiences a kind of erotic madness, a delirium that fuels her search for love. As a child suffering abandonment by her father, Anaïs wrote, “Close your eyes to the ugly things,” and, against a horrifying backdrop of war and death, Nin combats the world’s darkness with her own search for light.

Mirages collects, for the first time, the story that was cut from all of Nin’s other published diaries, particularly volumes 3 and 4 of The Diary of Anaïs Nin, which cover the same time period. It is the long-awaited successor to the previous unexpurgated diaries Henry and June, Incest, Fire, and Nearer the Moon. Mirages answers the questions Nin readers have been asking for decades: What led to the demise of Nin’s love affair with Henry Miller? Just how troubled was her marriage to Hugh Guiler? What is the story behind Nin’s “children,” the effeminate young men she seemed to collect at will? Mirages is a deeply personal story of heartbreak, despair, desperation, carnage, and deep mourning, but it is also one of courage, persistence, evolution, and redemption that reaches beyond the personal to the universal.


Picture of Anaïs Nin

Anaïs Nin (1903–1977) was a unique literary figure of the twentieth century. As a novelist she was distinctly catalytic, and her life-long diary resembles no other in the history of letters. Her books have been translated in a dozen languages.


Paul Herron is the editor and founder of Sky Blue Press.

A Swallow Press Book
Cover of 'Mirages'

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Hardcover978-0-8040-1146-4

440 pages · 6 × 9 in., 18 black and white photographs

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