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Many Mansions by Isabel Bolton

Many Mansions (1952)

by Isabel Bolton

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Elegant writing which put me in mind of Virginia Woolf.
It's the early 1950s and as 84-year old Margaret Sylvester looks out of her New York apartment, where she lives in genteel quasi-poverty, she reflects on her life, and on the memoir she once wrote. She recalls being raised in an aristocratic 19th century household...an affair, a child she was otr allowed to keep. And later moving on with her own life, immersing herself in social activism, the friendships and the changing backdrop of society as Victorian mores give way to the Bright Young Things, and later yet to the outbreak of WW2.
Against the changing world, she recalls her first love, and later people who surface in her life, from the troublesome lodger to a young man in straitened circumstances whom she has just befriended... And momentary impressions and recollections flit across her memory- flowers, the seasons, a beautiful party she hosted...
I found this slow to get into but it definitely grows on you as you get into the character. ( )
  starbox | Nov 11, 2018 |
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It had snowed in the night, but the snow had been removed from the streets.
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...describes the feelings of an eighty-year-old woman on re-reading an unpublished manuscript about her own life.
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