2007: 159. The Provincial Lady in London

“Life takes on entirely new aspect, due to astonishing and unprecedented success of minute and unpretentious literary effort, published last December, and -- incredibly -- written by myself.”

The Provincial Lady in London - E.M. Delafield

Didn’t enjoy it quite as much as The Diary of A Provincial Lady (Query - does familiarity breed contempt? Or are we always craving the new and thus nothing will ever be as charming as it once was?),* but this is still a charming and funny book.  Our friend the P.L. has had a small literary success and with the money raised has convinced her husband to allow her to get a small flat in London to continue to write.  She drifts back and forth between the capital and the city, having her slightly ridiculous adventures.  Parts I loved - the ridiculous adventures of the man eating Phoebe Pringle (and the P.L.’s quite human desire to stay her friend only to hear the dirt), the introduction of Casabianca as the children’s new summer tutor and the P.L.’s constant attempts to be sophisticated, and never quite making it.  I did miss the provincial life and characters - part of what made the first book so funny was her constant wry humor over aspects of her life, and London is just not as wryly funny as the sticks, at least when the P.L. is talking.**


Recommended for: People who liked the first P.L. book and want more; people looking for a lightly satirical glance at upper middle class life in London in the twenties/early thirties.


* That is my attempt to be like the P.L. - what do you think?


** It can be sublimely ridiculous, but the P.L. is not as good at that - and it just makes me miss Wodehouse when she tries!


Date/Place Completed: 10/15/07; D.C.

Categories:  Fiction

© Carrie Dunsmore 2017