Set in the 1760s, this coming-of-age novel follows the short life of young Mary Saunders who, cast onto the streets of London by her heartless mother, sells her body to survive before finding help in the Magdalen Hospital for penitent prostitutes. Seeking a better life, she travels to Monmouthshire and is hired as a dressmaker’s assistant, but further misfortune awaits her. Donahue’s eye for historical detail, particularly costume, enriches this tragic tale of adversity. Sexually explicit.
Essays on the Art of Angela Carter
Flesh and the Mirror
Since her death in 1992, Angela Carter’s reputation as a novelist has risen steadily. These essays explore her originality, daring and wit, providing an indispensible companion to the work. The contributors include Margaret Atwood, Hermione Lee, Marina Warner and Ali Smith, who provides the introduction.
Eve and the New Jerusalem
Socialism and Feminism in the Nineteenth Century
First published in 1983, this landmark history shed new light on the struggle for social justice and drew attention to the achievements of many forgotten women activists. Reissued with a new introduction, it remains as relevant as ever today.
Being the Further Adventures of the Treasure Seekers
E Nesbit wrote over 40 books for children, and this sequel to The Treasure Seekers sees the troublesome Bastable children vowing to mend their ways through the Society of the Wouldbegoods. Being good, however, proves harder than they think. Age 8+
The Surreal Life of Leonora Carrington
During childhood, Joanna Moorhead heard about a wild cousin called Prin who had fled their suffocatingly respectable family. When Joanna travelled to Mexico to find her, it was the start of a life-changing friendship, for her relative was none other than Leonora Carrington, the last surviving Surrealist. This book tells how, over tea and tequila, Leonora recalled her extraordinary life, her relationship with Max Ernst, her incarceration in an asylum, and her friendships with Picasso, Dalí and Frida Kahlo.
Letters Between Katherine Mansfield and John Middleton Murry
Katherine Mansfield and John Middleton Murry met in 1912 and married in 1918. Affectionate, informal and gossipy, their letters chart their stormy partnership, her writing, relations with the Bloomsbury Group, and the illness that would claim her at just 34. First published in 1988.
Trials of Passion
Crimes in the Name of Love and Madness
In judging ‘crimes of passion’, where should we draw the line between the ‘mad’ and the ‘bad’? This question featured prominently at several sensational trials between 1870 and 1914 as lawyers began to argue with psychiatrists over the inner lives of murderers. Focusing on three such trials in different countries, this book uses court and asylum records, letters and newspaper accounts to highlight the social debates prompted by the mind doctors’ new concepts of insanity.
Avant-Garde Poet, English Genius
One of a trio of aristocratic, eccentric and artistically inclined siblings, Edith Sitwell is largely remembered for her severe and striking profile and for her exotic and extravagant costumes. This sympathetic and impressively researched biography uncovers her troubled upbringing, her religious beliefs, her passionate love affairs, and the deep pain she felt at two World Wars. Above all, however, it establishes the author of 'Still Falls the Rain' as a pioneering Modernist and a major English poet.
Words That Burn
How to Read Poetry and Why: Poems From Eight Great Poets
Inspired by the series of poetry evenings organized by Josephine Hart at the British Library, Words That Burn presents more than 50 poems, both on the page and in audio format on a CD of live readings by great actors. Hart's brief introductions outline the lives of the poets, who range from Milton to Robert Lowell, drawing attention to the themes and techniques which are prominent in the selected texts.
Elizabeth Taylor: Three Novels
Memorably described by fellow novelist Paul Bailey as 'reports from the chintz-bedecked battlefields', the novels of Elizabeth Taylor (1912-1975) are subtle, sophisticated portraits of English domestic life, its cruelties and its inadvertent comedy. Our three are A View of the Harbour (1947), set in a small coastal community; Angel (1957), the life of a writer of very bad novels; and Taylor's penultimate book, Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont (1971). With introductions by Sarah Waters, Hilary Mantel and Paul Bailey.