Mary Renault

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The Friendly Young Ladies

book | Fiction | 1943
UK & Comm → Virago Modern Classics
US → Open Road Integrated Media

Elsie, sheltered and naive, is seventeen and unhappy. Stifled by life with her bickering parents in a bleak Cornish village, she falls in love with the first presentable young man she meets - Peter, an ambitious London doctor. On his advice she runs away from home and goes to live with her sister Leonora, who escaped eight years earlier.

But there are surprises in store for conventional Elsie as her sister has a rather bohemian lifestyle: not only does Leo live in a houseboat on the Thames where she writes Westerns for a living, she shares her boat - and her bed - with Helen. When Peter pays a visit, turning his attention from one 'friendly young lady' to the next, he disturbs the calm for each of them - with results unforeseen by all...

Mary Renault wrote this delightfully provocative novel in 1943 partly in answer to the despair characteristic of Radclyffe Hall's The Well of Loneliness. The result is this witty and stylish social comedy.

(originally published as The Middle Mist in the US)

Rights

Audio Rights

Unavailable

Jodi Fabbri (Heritage) manages the translation rights for The Friendly Young Ladies

Film Rights

Available

Contact Joe Phillips & Jenn Lambert for more information

Reviews

A very lively and human story.

New York Times Book Review

Written with rare insight.

Boston Globe

Representation
Books
Gordon Wise
+44 (0) 20 7393 4420
Email Gordon Wise
Theatre, Film and TV
Joe Phillips & Jenn Lambert
+44 (0)20 7393 4459
Email Joe Phillips & Jenn Lambert
Heritage
Jodi Fabbri (Heritage)
+44 (0)78 7487 2779
Email Jodi Fabbri (Heritage)