Faber Members get 10% off their first order

Ariel’s Gift

Erica Wagner

Ariel’s Gift by Erica Wagner offers a revolutionary commentary on Ted Hughes’s astonishing volume of poems Birthday Letters, a twenty-five year project addressed almost exclusively to his first wife, Sylvia Plath.

Date Published
All orders are sent via Royal Mail and are tracked: choose from standard or premium delivery.

Erica Wagner provides a comprehensive guide to the poems that must constitute one of the most extraordinary and powerful volumes published in the last century. When Ted Hughes’s Birthday Letters was published in 1998, it was greeted with astonishment and acclaim. Few suspected that Ted Hughes had been at work, for a quarter of a century, on a cycle of poems addressed almost entirely to his first wife, the American poet Sylvia Plath. In Ariel’s Gift, Erica Wagner offers a commentary on the poems, pointing the reader towards the events that shaped them, and, crucially, showing how they draw upon Plath’s own work.


Erica Wagner is an author and critic. Her books include Gravity: Stories, Ariel’s Gift: Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath and the Story of Birthday Letters and Chief Engineer: Washington Roebling, The Man Who Built the Brooklyn Bridge. Literary editor of The Times for 17 years, she is now a contributing writer for the New Statesman, consulting literary editor for Harper’s Bazaar…

Read More