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In a post-war London boarding house, kindly Mrs. Hawkins, adept at handling other people's problems, finds herself a player in some very strange events
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Muriel Spark (1918–2006) was the author of dozens of novels, including The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Memento Mori, A Far Cry from Kensington, The Girls of Slender Means, The Ballad of Peckham Rye, The Driver’s Seat, and many more. She became Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1993.From AudioFile:
A rooming house in South Kensington and the publishing business in London following World War II are seen through the eyes of Mrs. Hawkins and told superbly by Eleanor Bron. Each character has his own idiosyncracy, and the smooth transition from one to another is never compromised. Of course, this is due mostly to Muriel Spark's ability to flesh out her characters. But Bron deserves credit as well, going from one accent to another, one voice to another, with subtle but effective changes. Her accents are authentic, and her male voices are spoken by suggestion, not by dropping to her lowest register. Hearing this story is an enjoyable experience. J.P. (c)AudioFile, Portland, Maine
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Book Description Avon Books (P), 1990. Soft cover. Condition: New. Even the title is witty in this latest of Spark's delightful novels, bearing as it does at least three layers of ambiguity. It is a tale told in a splendidly commonsensical way by Mrs. Hawkins, a buxom young war widow who is a tower of strength in a failing London publishing house during the lean years after WW II. She is surrounded, both at work and in her seedy Kensington boarding house, by those slightly off-center eccentrics the Englishand particularly Sparkdraw to perfection; everything on the surface seems utterly realistic, yet fantasy as rich as anything in Garcia Marquez is only a breath away. Mrs. Hawkins selects a hate object among the literary hangers-on at her firm, and that hatred changes her life. She also becomes involved with a Polish dressmaker with a dark secret, invents a supremely successful method of dieting and almost in spite of herself becomes happy. Spark knows the wonderfully zany world of postwar-London publishing backward, her wit has never been more telling, and any book person is going to gobble this up. A sample, to whet the appetite: ``Publishers, for obvious reasons, attempt to make friends with their authors. Martin York tried to make authors of his friends.''. Seller Inventory # ABE-1506166454948
Book Description Avon Books (P), 1990. Paperback. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0380707861
Book Description Avon Books, 1990. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0380707861