It is the Mirabile Dictu summer giveaway! Leave a comment if you would like either or both of the following books. You have an excellent chance of “winning,” especially compared to your very slight chance of winning a book at Goodreads!
Barbara Trapido’s Brother of the More Famous Jack. The winner of the Whitbread Special Prize for Fiction in 1982, this charming comedy is slightly reminiscent of the early novels of Margaret Drabble (The Millstone, etc.). The heroine, Katherine, is a very pretty girl who loves fashionable clothes. When her “date,” a middle-aged bisexual man who picks her up in a bookstore, takes her for the weekend to the home of her philosophy professor, Jacob Goldman,she falls in love with the whole family. After a disastrous affair with one of the sons, she moves to Italy. When she returns a decade later, her circumstances have changed and so have the Goldmans’. A poignant and witty novel.
Nancy Mitford’s The Blessing. I love Mitford’s novels, and while this comedy of manners is very slight, it is entertaining. This is a 1951 Book-of-the-Month edition with a charming if sightly tatty cover.
The jacket copy says: “Grace Allingham, a naive English rose, marries Charles-Edouard de Valhubert, a French aristo who doesn’t believe in fidelity. Both are duped, meantime, by their son Sigismund — the Blessing of the title — a juvenile Machiavelli who mixes Gallic cunning with Saxon thoroughness to become one of Mitford’s most memorable characters.”
Bona fortuna! as we say in Latin.
Americans and Canadians welcome to enter! I love the rest of you, too, but the postage is too high.