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Harriet Waugh Biography

(1944– ), Mirror, Mirror, Mother's Footsteps, Kate's House, tour de force

British novelist, born in Somerset, the daughter of Evelyn Waugh. She has worked as a publisher's reader and written several distinctive and original blackly comic novels of domestic intrigue among affluent middle-class families. Her first, Mirror, Mirror (1973), described by Timothy Mo as ‘a very fine piece of black fantasy’, was followed by others including Mother's Footsteps (1978), which portrays, with ironic twists of plot, a feckless mother-in-law who is detested by both her daughter (herself constantly on the edge of a nervous breakdown) and her highly conventional, but devious, son-in-law. Kate's House (1983) is a tour de force in its portrayal of a peculiarly malevolent 4-year-old, who succeeds in manipulating, in fantastic manner, all the characters in the novel.

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Literature Reference: American Literature, English Literature, Classics & Modern FictionEncyclopedia of Literature: Robert Penn Warren Biography to Kenneth White Biography