- Paperback: 160 pages
- Publisher: Harper Perennial Modern Classics; 1.11.2009 edition (February 10, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0061711292
- ISBN-13: 978-0061711299
- Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.4 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (210 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #24,348 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $4.62 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie: A Novel Paperback – February 10, 2009
|New from||Used from|
100 (Fiction) Books to Read in a Lifetime
AbeBooks.com, an Amazon Company, recommends a unique list of must-read books. Learn More on AbeBooks.com.
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
"Muriel Spark is one of the few writers on either side of the Atlantic with enough resources, daring, and stamina to be altering, as well as feeding, the fiction machine...We are never out of touch in a Spark novel with the happiness of creation; the sudden willful largesse of magic and wit, the cunning tautness of suspense."-John Updike, "The New Yorker"
"One of our greatest living novelists." -"The Times
"Spark's powers of invention are apparently inexhaustible." -"Commonwealth"
"[Spark is] one of this century's finest creators of comic-metaphysical entertainment." -"New York Times"
"Some of [Spark's] finest fictions are novellas rather than novels, short enough to be read in a single dizzying sitting." -David Lodge
"[Spark] has written some things that seem likely to go on being read as long as fiction in English is read at all." -"New York Times Book Review"
From the Inside Flap
The brevity of Muriel Spark's novels is equaled only by their brilliance. These four novels, each a miniature masterpiece, illustrate her development over four decades. Despite the seriousness of their themes, all four are fantastic comedies of manners, bristling with wit.
Spark's most celebrated novel, THE PRIME OF MISS JEAN BRODIE, tells the story of a charismatic schoolteacher's catastrophic effect on her pupils. THE GIRLS OF SLENDER MEANS" is a beautifully drawn portrait of young women living in a hostel in London in the giddy postwar days of 1945. THE DRIVER'S SEAT follows the final haunted hours of a woman descending into madness. And THE ONLY PROBLEM is a witty fable about suffering that brings the Book of Job to bear on contemporary terrorism.
All four novels give evidence of one of the most original and unmistakable voices in contemporary fiction. Characters are vividly etched in a few words; earth-shaking events are lightly touched on. Yet underneath the glittering surface there is an obsessive probing of metaphysical questions: the meaning of good and evil, the need for salvation, the search for significance.
Browse award-winning titles. See more
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top customer reviews
Most of the story takes place in Edinburgh, Scotland, at the Marcia Blaine School for Girls. There, in 1930, in spite of the school's fish bowl environment, a teacher, who repeatedly proclaims her prime, creates for herself, with six 10 year old pupils, a secret society. For two years, during school periods scheduled for such subjects as Arithmetic or Geography, she tells her pupils enthralling, fabulistic, stories about her dead lover, Hugh, and her trips to Egypt or Italy, and she shows them prints of paintings. Through the subtext of her lessons and stories, she also sets them against the prevailing, Calvinistic ethos of the school.
At age 16, these girls are still recognized at the school as "unmistakably Brodie" by their unusual knowledge base, their innumeracy, their lack of exposure to the "authorized curriculum", and by how devoted they are to their former teacher. They play golf with Miss Brodie, take tea with her and tutor her in Greek.
The dark side of this devotion and its object is first shown when one girl, Jenny, is easily pressured by Miss Brodie into missing a meeting of "The Dramatic Society" so that she can join the other five girls attending to Miss Brodie's drama---the latest "plot which is afoot" to force Miss Brodie to resign. Later in the book, Miss Brodie attempts to make another of these teenagers (Rose) her unwitting proxy in adultery. And Joyce Emily, a student outside this group---spurred to recklessness under the influence of Miss Brodie---is killed.
Who or what is worthy of devotion ? That's the novel's question. Sandy finally grows to see and love the goodness, truth and beauty of the answer. She's saved from the two fires of delusion consuming the humanity of people in her world of 1930's Edinburgh; and compelled to get Miss Brodie canned.
The group of girls become known as the Brodie set for their loyalty to her. They are highly sought after by the headmistress who hopes to glean information from them that will allow her to fire Miss Brodie. She's in love with the married art teacher but carries on an affair with the single, but not so interesting music teacher.
Miss Jean Brodie tries her best to manipulate the set. But the girls, well trained by her, are able to turn the tables. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie doesn't have much of a plot. The reader is however, taken deep inside the ego of a woman who insists she's in her prime. And we hike through the minds of children as they grow to maturity. This novel is really a brilliant psychological mind trip.
I had no idea where this book would take me when I started reading it. I often hoped for more twists and turns but in the end I was left feeling fully satisfied. Unusual is the best word I can think of to describe a woman in her prime. I'm still wondering if I'm in my own prime or if it as already passed me by. Where is Miss Jean Brodie when I need her?