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I adore Barbara Pym's novels, probably because I over-identify with her spinsterish heroines. I would highly recommend a new book, "What They Ate: Six Remarkable Women and the Food that Tells Their Stories," by Laura Shapiro. Barbara Pam is one of the six women, and the chapter on her makes me want to re-read a couple of her novels specifically to take note of the food references. (The chapter on Eleanor Roosevelt is also fascinating...)

Mary Ronan Drew

The Shapiro book sounds delightful. I've requested it from the library. An unusual set of women . . .


Wonderful words. I'm reading Miss Read just now, and he could be describing her work as well as BP's.

Mary Ronan Drew

I should get back to Miss Read, Nan, as I enjoy her books too.


Love that quote! I must admit that I'm not the biggest Barbara Pym fan, but the quote could easily apply to Anne Tyler's unassuming characters.

Mary Ronan Drew

You're right, Nicola. Anne Tyler has an uncanny knack of catching the dialogue of every day and portraying seemingly simple characters.

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