Fay Weldon’s first novel, a sharp and witty parable of the way people see themselves.
For several weeks, Esther Sussman had lived in a sordid flat in Earls Court. During the day she read science fiction novels. In the evenings she watched television. And she ate, and ate, and drank, and ate. She had not felt so secure since she spent her days in a pram. It had been her husband’s idea that they should go on a diet. Together they would fight middle-age flab and feel young again. It was the diet that had made Esther leave home. The lack of food had made her see things very clearly and she had looked at her life – the daily dusting, sweeping, cooking, washing-up – and found it all pointless. She had not felt strong enough for marriage, and so she escaped.
From the fastness of her Earls Court retreat Esther starts to recount the events leading up to her revelation to her friend Phyllis. ‘I suppose you really do believe your happiness is consequent upon your size?’ she asks. Phyllis does; Esther does not and triumphantly sets out to prove her point.
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‘Fay Weldon is a national treasure.’ Sam Leith, Literary Review
‘Fay Weldon’s voice is as unmistakeable as her acerbic wit.’ Financial Times
‘Fay Weldon writes as if she were Virginia Woolf and Roseanne Arnold joined at the hip. She is literary, well-read, totally in control, sharp as a needle and off the wall...’ Mirabella
‘Weldon, like Dickens, can have her readers perched on the edge of their chairs with excitement by the end of the first page and hold them there in a state of riveted curiosity until the last words.’ Evening Standard
‘Weldon is a gifted tease of a writer.’ Sunday Times
‘Prolific and provocative, Fay Weldon shines brightest in the league table of British women novelists.’ Time OutFrom the Back Cover:
'She ate frozen chips and peas and hamburgers, and sliced bread with bought jam and fishpaste, and baked beans and instant puddings, and tinned porridge, and tinned suet pudding, and cakes and biscuits from packets. She drank sweet coffee, sweet tea, sweet cocoa and sweet sherry.'
What is the joke? What's she laughing at? What in the world can she find to laugh about, fat fierce old Esther? Her husband's mistress going off with her son? Funny? Going on a diet and ending up with less waist and less husband than when she started? Funny?
It had, in fact, been Esther's husband's idea to go on a diet – they'd do it together. But sometime into their enforced starvation, Esther had a revelation. Suddenly she saw her life for what it was and found it all remarkably pointless. And so Esther left home, moved to a flat of her own, and began eating…
'Impassioned, angry, quirky and brilliant.'
'New York Times'
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Book Description Flamingo, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0007109229
Book Description Flamingo, 2003. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110007109229