Saturday, July 24, 2010

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson

This was my first Persephone book, i.e. my first book printed by a publisher who rescues and reprints neglected classics of the 20th century, mostly by female authors. I think that it's an incredible thing for a publisher to do and I will happily read others - any recommendations?

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day is incredibly enjoyable. The story is about a middle-aged spinster who works as a nanny and hates is. She is looking for a new position and is sent to the house of Miss LaFosse, a lounge singer who to Miss Pettigrew appears to be quite outrageous. This initial reaction turns into adoration and admiration, leading to an addiction to the exciting events that happen in Miss LaFosse's life. No children are to be seen anywhere but there isn't time to ask Miss Lafosse about the vacant position, Miss Pettigrew is too busy sorting out love lives and giving life advice. And falling in love herself too.

The book is charming. Amazon calls it a Cinderella story for adults and it's true - lovely characters, a belief in the power of love and a beautifully happy ending make this the ultimate feel-good story.

Oh and it's written and set in the 1930s, which adds to its charm immensely.

Positively lovely.

Challenges: Women Unbound, 1% Well-Read


Tasha said...

I don't think I've read many books from the 1930s, and this sounds like a good one to start with.

Aarti said...

I've got this one on my shelf to read- I'm excited! It seems to be universally thought a very happy book.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

I love the 1930s and really wish I had known about Nymeth's challenge ahead of time (sorry Ana!!!). Ever since seeing this movie I've wanted to read the book--the movie is a lot of fun and Amy Adams was so perfect in the role.

anothercookiecrumbles said...

I loved this book - it's such a wonderful feel good read. Sometimes, it's all you want!

Glad you enjoyed it :)

joanna said...

Charley - you can really get into the era with this one.

Aarti - definitely a happy book!

Nymeth - me too! :-)

Trish - I've been avoiding the movie, as I wanted to read the book first. Now I'm really excited to see it!

anothercookie - indeed. I think it's the only truly happy book I've found.

Eva said...

I love the recent movie adaptation of this one! I really do need to read the book now. :D

Iliana said...

This book is so wonderful. I've read a few Persephones and this is definitely my favorite. So glad to hear you loved it. If you want something a bit different but quite good too I would recommend The Blank Wall. More of a noir type mystery.

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

Ms. Joanna--I need your email address for the giveaway. Can you email me at trishsreadingnook at gmail dot com? :)

joanna said...

Eva - and I need to see the movie! :-)

Iliana - thanks, I'll try The Blank Wall

Trish - You have mail! :-)