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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day

Watson, Winifred.  Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day.

Thoroughly charming, this little book is has the whimsy of a delightful fairy tale.  Miss Pettigrew is sent to interview as a governess, but inadvertently becomes a life-saver when her future employer opens the door and begs for her help.  The lovely Miss LaFosse draws the middle-aged spinster into the glamorous and somewhat dissolute life of the "bright young things" of the 1930's.

Miss Pettigrew puts aside her niggling moral judgments when Miss LaFosse and her friends not only happily include her, but find her wise and clever and capable of helping solve their various difficulties.  Miss Pettigrew receives a make-over in all senses of the phrase.  Surprised and happy to be seen in such a new light, Miss Pettigrew gives herself over to the enjoyment of the day, feeling much like a modern Cinderella.

I've read many positive reviews of this book and join the ranks of its many fans.  Light-hearted and amusing, Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day is definitely a feel-good read.

A Persephone Classic--I know that Danielle and Iliana are collectors of these "reprints of neglected classic by C20th (mostly women) writers."

Fiction.  1938/2008.  234 pages.


  1. This sounds like such a sweet little book. I'm thinking it's the perfect book to bring on my family's holiday camping trip, where we do nothing outdoorsy and just sit inside by the fire and read. :)

  2. The film adaptation of this was delightful, and it sounds from your review that this quality came straight from the source material.

  3. Jenny - A modern fairy tale (via the 1930's), it is the kind of story you'd like to happen in real life!

    Christy- I knew there was a film version from the book cover and will have to check Netflix. Thanks for reminding me!

  4. I remember Danielle and Iliana both liking it and then forgot about it completely. Thanks for the reminder!

  5. I plan to read this eventually! Looks good!

  6. This sounds like a lot of fun -- perfect for when I need a comfort read. I'll keep it in mind!

  7. I want this! I discovered Persephone this year and loved the (admittedly few) books I've read so far :)

  8. Stefanie - It is a funny little fairy tale with some interesting elements.

    Kelly &Marg - Miss P is quite short, an easy read and a nice evening's entertainment.

    Dorothy - I enjoyed it and look forward to the film that I've added to my Netflix que!

    Nymeth - This was my first Persephone, but it won't be my last. I appreciate their reprinting books so stylishly!

  9. I absolutely loved this book! The movie is nice, too. There were things that I wished they'd left alone, though, of course.

  10. My wife read this after the film came out and really enjoyed it. I highly recommend the film, it really is a delight.

  11. Bookfool - We all love that happy ending, right? I'm looking forward to the film, but it is rare that film versions match the book.

    Carl - Looking forward to seeing the film version, although maybe I should wait until the the book is less fresh in my mind. Oh, and Happy Birthday, Carl!