'Lady B. stays to tea. (Mem.: Bread-and-butter too thick. Speak to Ethel.) We talk some more about bulbs, the Dutch School of Painting, our Vicar's wife, sciatica, and All Quiet on the Western Front. (Query: is it possible to cultivate the art of conversation when living in the country all the year round?)'
If the question suggests a qualified answer, there is no doubt that the art of diary writing is alive and well and very, very funny in Devonshire in the 1920s. At least in the hands of E. M. Delafield. Though poles apart in many ways, Bridget Jones's Diary could not have existed without her sometimes arch, often lofty, but deeply English upper middle class forbear.
Diary of a Provincial Lady is a classic of its time, revealing the thoughts and concerns of a Lady embedded in family life and the mores of comfortable country life. She has a husband 'raised to the peerage', two children and servants; she is burdened by the superior Lady Boxe, the tiresome vicar's wife and the constant temptation to live beyond her monthly household allowance. But she soldiers on, recording her days with acute observation, wit, self-deprecation and colour.
A balance to the Bloomsbury intensity of the day, this is a classic that has never been out of print and now comes to life in this pitch-perfect reading by Georgina Sutton.
©2016 PD (P)2016 Ukemi Productions Ltd
A fictional diary from the 1920s, almost entirely taking place in the Devonshire countryside, is lively, amusing and most enjoyable. It might have been boring, but most certainly isn't and although life is very different today, some of the problems encountered chime with our own.
There are so many : almost impossible to pick one out as they follow in quick succession nearly every day of the diarist's life.
The diary is written in the first person and Georgina Sutton is quite excellent. She has a gift for bringing out the humour, of which there is much, but also makes her character very sympathetic.
I believe there are other books following the Provincial Lady's life. It would be wonderful if Georgina Sutton could record them as well. She is the perfect narrator.
Recommend without any hesitation. Really hope the rest of the series and radio adaptation are soon available.
Sixth or seventh time of re-visiting Diary of Provincial Lady. ALWAYS a joy from bulbs to Lady B's party. Our Vicar's Wife my favourite character in literature. WELL worth A Read.
I have loved this book since I discovered it. At last a worthy audio version. It is still universally funny, even in our egalitarian world.
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