The Millstone (Harvest Book) and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
Qty:1
  • List Price: $14.95
  • Save: $3.56 (24%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com.
Gift-wrap available.
The Millstone has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: Unmarked book has been read but remains in good condition with solid binding. Cover has some rubbing and wear at the edges.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Millstone Paperback – October 15, 1998


See all 39 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle
"Please retry"
Hardcover, Import
"Please retry"
$13.40
Paperback
"Please retry"
$11.39
$7.45 $5.25
Mass Market Paperback
"Please retry"
Unknown Binding
"Please retry"
$22.23

The Amazon Book Review
The Amazon Book Review
Check out The Amazon Book Review, our editors' fresh new blog featuring interviews with authors, book reviews, quirky essays on book trends, and regular columns by our editors. Explore now
$11.39 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. In Stock. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

The Millstone + The Buried Giant: A novel
Price for both: $29.75

Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review

"...an old-fashioned comedy in the truest sense of the word. Often as meticulous as Jane Austen and as deadly as Evelyn Waugh, Drabble writes in the tradition of George Meredith...Drabble skewers the egotism of her characters and of the society they inhabit with subtle humor and elegant psychological analysis." -- Los Angeles Times

About the Author

MARGARET DRABBLE is the author of The Sea Lady, The Seven Sisters, The Peppered Moth, and The Needle's Eye, among other novels. For her contributions to contemporary English literature, she was made a Dame of the British Empire in 2008.

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Series: Harvest Book
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Mariner Books (October 15, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0156006197
  • ISBN-13: 978-0156006194
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #406,328 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Margaret Drabble is the author of The Sea Lady, The Seven Sisters, The Peppered Moth, and The Needle's Eye, among other novels. She has written biographies of Arnold Bennett and Angus Wilson, and she is the editor of the fifth and sixth editions of The Oxford Companion to English Literature. For her contributions to contemporary English literature, she was made a Dame of the British Empire in 2008.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Duane Simolke on November 10, 2001
Format: Paperback
The Waterfall remains my favorite Margaret Drabble novel, but this one uses a faster pace and even more humor. That humor comes from timing and odd observations, rather than obvious attempts at making readers laugh. For example, just before Rosamund Stacey loses her virginity, her seducer asks, "Is this all right? Are you all right, will this be all right?" Rosamund then tells us "that was it and it was over." You'll hate when this book is over. Rosamund seems like an old friend, and you'll enjoy your visit with her.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Luc REYNAERT on July 23, 2005
Format: Paperback
This moving short novel portraits the rude awakening of a young woman, who after making love with a 'silly bugger' becomes an unmarried mother.

The dreams of youth, 'I used to be so good-natured. I used to see the best in every-one', becomes 'my growing selfishness, this was probably maturity.' 'Life would never be a simple question of self-denial again.'

There is also the chasm between the education's view of mankind and the facts of real life.

Education was the cause of 'my inability to see anything in human terms of like and dislike, love and hate, but only in terms of justice, guilt and innocence', and 'the endurance of privation is a virtue.'

However as an adult, she is confronted with 'resentments breed so near the craddle, that people should have it from birth'; 'facts of inequality, of the heart-breaking uneven hardship of the human lot. These things were as nothing compared with the bond that bind parent and child'.

As another woman in the novel says: 'I haven't the energy to go worrying about other people's children. I only have enough time to worry about myself. If I didn't put myself and mine first, they wouldn't survive.'

And finally, there is the unbearable burden of Victorian religion: 'the thought of sex freightened the life out of me.' 'If Octavia were to die, this would be a vengeance upon my sin.'

In naturally flowing prose, Margaret Drabble paints a most human portrait of innocence and struggle for (emotional) survival, youth and adulthood and the mighty marks of religion (guilt) and 'unselfish' education.

A masterly written short novel.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Ladyce West on February 24, 2004
Format: Paperback
This was my first Margaret Drabble and I was pleasantly surprised at the cutting but subtle satire of English manners of the 1960s. The theme itself -- a single woman's decision to have a child without a husband -- was rather in keeping with the sexual revolution brought about in the 1960s in Western Europe. The narration is light and engaging, in keeping with the best of the traditional English social satirists from Austen to Pym. For my taste the books loses momentum in the last quarter, but it is still a very intelligent rendition of manners and mores.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Stephen Schwartz on July 7, 2009
Format: Paperback
But to call it a "treat" is to belittle this wonderful book. Drabble is an uneven author. Her Sea Lady is a brilliant novel that I highly recommend. Other of her works are indifferent or worse, e.g. The Radiant Way (see my review). Well, The Millstone by Drabble is one of the best novels I've read in years. Truly a surprise discovery that I highly recommend. This is a heartwarming and also somewhat tragic story that unfolds with humor, irony, insight, and empathy.

The entire novel is told in the first person from the point of view of Rosamund. Rosamund is a diffident young literary woman living alone in London who gets pregnant the first time she has sex, and that quite casually with a casual friend. This book was written in the mid-1960s and reflects the developing and changing attitudes of that era toward sex and life, but still at that time having an "illegitimate" child was not accepted and expected the way it is now. Nevertheless Rosamund, through a combination of diffidence and courage, ends up having her child.

Of course, since I was about the same age or a bit younger than Rosamund in the mid-60s, this story rattled my aging memories. It brought many a smile to my wrinkled face, and yes a tear too. Much has changed since the 1960s--Gosh, it was almost fifty years ago. Besides a glimpse into literary London, The Millstone is a depiction of the state of medicine, especially gynecology and pediatrics, at that time. Fortunately medicine has improved vastly both technically and socially. The Millstone paints a very depressing picture of the British National Health Service and the treatment of mothers to be and mothers with sick children. This novel is an indictment of nationalized medicine--but that is only a small part of the story.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Philip Spires on March 1, 2008
Format: Paperback
Rosamund Stacey is the first person narrator of her own story in the Millstone by Margaret Drabble. Rosamund is a single mother - nothing strange about that, perhaps, at least in a twenty-first century Britain where now half of births are outside of marriage. But in the early 1960s, when The Millstone was written, unmarried mothers were not so common and it was a status to which considerable stigma was attached.

Consequently, when Rosamund visits hospital for her regular check-ups, she is summoned from the waiting room with a call of Mrs. Stacey in an attempt to maintain the privacy of her status. She longs for the day - and not too distant - when her thesis on Elizabethan poetry will be complete and she can prefix her name with Dr., thereby avoiding the deception.

The Millstone is written in Margaret Drabble's conversational, yet dense style. The characters are highly complex and seem to live their lives with a devotion to intricacy. Not much happens to them, however, and events are few and far between. Rosamund's life is a case in point. It was Cambridge, of course, followed by the relative comfort of a flat in central London, an apartment provided by her parents calculatedly close to the British Museum, where she does most of her research. She is definitely not the run-of-the-mill young lass who attends university nowadays, our Rosamund. She has a boyfriend at college, of course, but they never sleep together, not even on the occasion they jointly plan to accomplish the act.

Rosamund is not really into sex, she thinks. She has a tendency to see herself as an object from without, and her observation of the absurdity of various aspects of being human lead her to a life slightly removed from reality, lived apparently at arm's length from experience.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
The Millstone
This item: The Millstone
Price: $11.39
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?