Here is a review from my files of Rhododendron Pie, Margery Sharp’s first novel. The reviews are about as rare as the novel, itself. I thought this one captured the spirit of the book quite well, and it made me think of other domestic novels of this period that we enjoy.
The title comes from the opening line of Margery Sharp’s late in life book, The Sun in Scorpio. Today, in terms of good literary news, it could be said that ‘everything sparkled’. Today is the day that Open Road Media is releasing ten of Margery Sharp’s books in ebook format!
Just a reminder, Margery Sharp fans, that TEN, yes ten!– of her books will be released via Open Road Media Publishing in ebook form. The date? April 12, 2016! The featured book today is Cluny Brown. I just re-read it, from a preview copy of the eBook, and I really enjoyed the type style and…
How did Leonard Purday—painfully shy, and overly mothered—manage to find himself in a compromising situation in a young woman’s hotel bedroom in 1937?
If the title sounds cliché, never mind that. There are all sorts of intrigues in this story. One of the intrigues is the novel, itself. For some reason it was never published in book form, and, therefore, it could be considered a ‘lost’ novel of Margery Sharp. How exciting is that?
‘It was a door Ruskin could have devoted a whole chapter to.’ It’s difficult to write a review for a book that: a.) is from a favorite and respected author, but far from her best work b.) is disliked by almost everyone who has read it In Pious Memory is just such a novel. It…
“I know how Britannia Mews started. I was walking through a semi-slum stable that was being converted into these elegant little town cottages, and I thought, ‘What a history that place has had since the day it was built! —carriages and horses, then desolation, now cocktail parties and theatre clubs.” Margery Sharp
The Faithful Servants is very much a book for the present, if you enjoy serialized dramas of the British class divide such as Upstairs Downstairs, or Downton Abbey. The novel presents another journey—a zesty one la Margery—through the ravages of war and social change, from the Edwardian era to the end of the second World War.
For generations of readers, the English country house has lived as a character in its own right. One can immediately think of many examples—Bleak House, Mansfield Park, Howards End, Wuthering Heights, and the most recent being Downton Abbey—stories, faces, dramas, love and conflict all instantly flash into mind just based on the name of the roof that housed them.
Louisa Datchett is a flaming redhead, dynamic, warm-hearted, impulsive; a bit nutty but decidedly likable. The story unfolds as a hilarious romp through the romantic misadventures of this matrimonially determined young woman.