Posted 20 hours ago

The Diary of a Provincial Lady

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Criteria - is it interesting? Yes; is it well written? Yes; is the language and grammar good? Very; Did I enjoy it? Oh, yes; did I have difficulty putting it down? Yes; would I like to read more by this author? Yes, definitely.

The Diary of a Provincial Lady by E M Delafield With Illustrations by Arthur Watts First published 1930 Four books are included here, and each has its delights. The first: "Diary of a Provincial Lady" is just that--the life of a middle class wife and mother in Devon, complete with "Our Vicar", the snobby local grande dame in the manor house, the problems of cooks and housemaids, and a perfect stiff upper lipped husband who takes refuge behind the newspaper. The Suburban Young Man (1928) - Peter has fallen in love with the well-born Antoinette, but his Scottish wife Hope remains in admirable control of the situation. Dedicated "To All Those Nice People who have so often asked me to Write a Story about Nice People".Zella Sees Herself was well received, and three other novels followed before, in 1919, she married Francis Dashwood, second son of a sixth baronet. After two years in Malaya, she settled happily in Devonshire, had two children, a boy and a girl, and became a magistrate and a great worker for the WI. Wonderful characters from the vicars wife, Lady B to Helen Wheels the cat who was always having kittens and the plight of the bulbs! Here is a biography of E. M. Delafield (her married name: Edmée Elizabeth Monica Dashwood): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E._M._D...

I read something of Delafield’s while I was living in Devon, but it wasn’t this. I’ve just been scouring through her biblio in Wikipedia, but nothing rings a bell. Grr! And gradually one realises that, despite the short sentences and the simplicity and unpretentiousness of the prose and subject matter, here is a very subtle and deliberate talent at work, naturally satirical, with a marvellous ear for dialogue and an unerringly accurate social sense. I ask Robert, sentimentally, if this makes him think of our wedding. He looks surprised and says No, not particularly, why should it? As I cannot at the moment think of any particular reply to this, the question drops.

Query: Cannot man of our moral lapses from Truth be frequently charged upon the tactless persistence of others?)"

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