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Mortimer, Penelope

story short novel women

(British, 1918–99)

A journalist, short-story writer, and novelist, Penelope Mortimer wrote Joanna, her first novel, in 1947. She is, however, best known for The Pumpkin Eater (1962), which was made into a successful film scripted by Harold Pinter. This short but compelling novel was a frank account of an emotional breakdown, and begins with the protagonist, Mrs Armitage, telling her story to a therapist. This, and her later work, including The Home (1971), My Friend Says it's Bullet Proof (1967), and Long Distance (1974), are simply constructed, moving novels, placing ordinary women at the centre of the story. As such they were important contributions to the new movement of women's writing which emerged in the 1960s.

Margaret Drabble, Muriel Spark  SB

Morton, Anthony. [next] [back] Mortimer, John

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