The Bell Jar (Paperback)
  • The Bell Jar (Paperback)
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The Bell Jar (Paperback)

(author)
£9.99
Paperback 240 Pages
Published: 09/04/2001
  • 10+ in stock

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Waterstones Says

Plath’s seminal novel about a young female writer’s ambitions and experiences amidst the impermeable misogyny of 1950s society moves from razor sharp humour to stunning insights into depression and mental illness. 

I was supposed to be having the time of my life.

When Esther Greenwood wins an internship on a New York fashion magazine in 1953, she is elated, believing she will finally realise her dream to become a writer.

But in between the cocktail parties and piles of manuscripts, Esther's life begins to slide out of control. She finds herself spiralling into depression and eventually a suicide attempt, as she grapples with difficult relationships and a society which refuses to take women's aspirations seriously.

The Bell Jar, Sylvia Plath's only novel, was originally published in 1963 under the pseudonym Victoria Lucas. The novel is partially based on Plath's own life and descent into mental illness, and has become a modern classic. The Bell Jar has been celebrated for its darkly funny and razor sharp portrait of 1950s society and has sold millions of copies worldwide.

A classic work of Anglo-American feminist literature The Bell Jar – which was published in the UK just a month before Sylvia Plath’s suicide - has long been the subject of intense scrutiny, interrogated as much for its connection with Plath’s own life as for its undoubted literary brilliance. Plath herself invited the comparison, describing the book to her mother saying, ‘what I’ve done is to throw together events from my own life, fictionalising to add colour – it’s a potboiler really… I’ve tried to picture my world and the people in it as seen through the distorting lens of a bell jar.’ As the Guardian comments, ‘it’s a raw, unsettling book with flashes of brilliance, a roman à clef that’s also a long, tormented footnote to Plath’s tormented poetry’.

Publisher: Faber & Faber
ISBN: 9780571081783
Number of pages: 240
Weight: 202 g
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 14 mm
Edition: Main - Re-issue


MEDIA REVIEWS

This is a novel about ambition and desire, about a woman's refusal even to contemplate life as a doormat. Esther wants everything. She's funny, vivid, extreme. There had been few heroines like her in fiction, but many more were to follow in her wake.’ – Margaret Drabble

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“Love it”

Love this book! Superbly written. Draws you in from the first page. Great insight into depression and mental illness. If you've ever been a young woman, you can really relate to many of the themes covered, and... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 117

“An excellent read that I cannot recommend highly enough.”

Given the somewhat legendary status of this book, I have been putting off reading it for awhile but having read it I really wish I had read it sooner. It deserves its reputation wholly and completely and then some.... More

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 98

“Absolutely amazing book”

Completely gripping from start to finish. one of my favourite books - this is a definite one to read.

Paperback edition
Helpful? Upvote 71

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