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The Bell Jar chronicles the crack-up of Esther Greenwood: brilliant, beautiful, enormously talented, and successful, but slowly going under--maybe for the last time. Sylvia Plath masterfully draws the reader into Esther's breakdown with such intensity that Esther's insanity becomes completely real and even rational, as probable and accessible an experiece as going to the movies. Such deep penetration into the dark and harrowing corners of the psyche is an extraordinary accomplishment and has made The Bell Jar a haunting American classic.
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"A fine novel, as bitter and remorseless as her last poems -- the kind of book Salinger's Fanny might have written about herself ten years later, if she had spent those ten years in Hell." -- Robert Scholes, The New York Times Book Review.
"By turns funny, harrowing, crude, ardent and artless. Its most notable quality is an astonishing immediacy, like a series of snapshots taken at high noon." -- Time.
"A special poignance... a special force, a humbling power, because it shows the vulnerability of people of hope and good will." -- Newsweek.
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