The Pure Gold Baby: Book summary and reviews of The Pure Gold Baby by Margaret Drabble

The Pure Gold Baby

By Margaret Drabble

The Pure Gold Baby
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  • Published in USA  Oct 2013,
    304 pages.

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Book Summary

Jessica Speight, a young anthropology student in 1960s London, is at the beginning of a promising academic career when an affair with her married professor turns her into a single mother. Anna is a pure gold baby with a delightful sunny nature. But as it becomes clear that Anna will not be a normal child, the book circles questions of responsibility, potential, even age, with Margaret Drabble's characteristic intelligence, sympathy, and wit.

Drabble once wrote, "Family life itself, that safest, most traditional, most approved of female choices, is not a sanctuary; it is, perpetually, a dangerous place." Told from the point of view of the group of mothers who surround Jess, The Pure Gold Baby is a brilliant, prismatic novel that takes us into that place with satiric verve, trenchant commentary, and a movingly intimate story of the unexpected transformations at the heart of motherhood.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"In the end, very little happens, and though Drabble's intelligence is evident, the story drags." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. Readers who yearn for well-crafted fiction full of thoughtful ideas and observations should welcome this heartily." - Library Journal

"Starred Review. Drabble is in peak form in this marvelously dexterous, tartly funny, and commanding novel of moral failings and women's quandaries, brilliantly infusing penetrating social critique with stinging irony as she considers what life makes of us and what we make of life." - Booklist

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Author Information

Margaret Drabble Author Biography

Photo: Chester Higgins Jr

Margaret Drabble was born June 5, 1939 in Sheffield, Yorkshire, England.

She attended the Mount School, York, a Quaker boarding-school, and was awarded a major scholarship to Newnham College, Cambridge, where she read English and received double honors. After graduating from Cambridge University, she joined the Royal Shakespeare Company at Stratford.

In 1960 she married her first husband, actor Clive Swift, who is best known for his role in the 1990 BBC television comedy Keeping Up Appearances. They had three children in the 1960's and divorced in 1975.

She subsequently married the biographer Michael Holroyd in the early 1980's. They live in London and also have a house in Somerset.

Her novel The Millstone won the John Llewelyn Rhys Prize, and she was the recipient of a Society of ...

... Full Biography
Link to Margaret Drabble's Website

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