Home-Maker, The [Classics Edition]

Author(s): Dorothy Canfield Fisher
ISBN13/Barcode: 9781906462130
"A remarkable and brave novel. I was astonished at the acute angle of vision and the fullness of sympathy toward both men and women--and children."--Carol ShieldsAn ahead-of-its-time novel about an unhappy and obsessively house-proud mother of three whose husband is disabled, leaving her free to work in a department store and him to be a Montessori father. One of the ten best-selling novels of 1924 and made into a (silent) film, it was singled out by Elaine Showalter in her recent book on American women writers and was included in the collection "Five Hundred Great Books by Women."Dorothy Canfield Fisher (1879-1958) was one of America's best-known novelists. "The Home-Maker" has been a bestseller for Persephone Books in the United Kingdom, and with this edition it will be widely available in the United States.

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This 1924 novel by a leading American writer is one of the Persephone books that has been most enjoyed by reading groups; it was included in a US collection, Five Hundred Great Books by Women; and the novelist Carol Shields wrote to us: 'I was astonished at the acute angle of vision and the fullness of sympathy, toward both men and women - and children.'

The Home-Maker describes Evangeline, an obsessively house-proud mother and home-maker (a word that is in everyday use in America but not in Britain) who renders each of her children miserable in different ways, through her perfectionism and her need to control; without realizing it, she is frustrated and bored - yet she thinks she is a good and devoted mother.

Lester, her husband, is also unhappy, at home and at work. It is only when he falls off a roof that his family's life changes; he is wheelchair-bound at home and his wife goes to work in a department store (the setting is smalltown New England). The children gradually blossom; all sorts of practical ruses are devised (like covering the kitchen floor with newspaper when Evangeline leaves each morning); and a Montessori Father is born. The scene where he surreptitiously watches his youngest child learning to use an eggwhisk is one of the great scenes in the literature of childhood, in 'a remarkable and brave novel' (Carol Shields).

To read more about The Home-Maker go to the Persephone Forum.

Also available as a Persephone Grey Original.


The design of this Warner silk, velvet and terry material, exported to the USA during the early 1920s, was derived from a French fabric based on medieval tapestries: two birds are facing each other and away from each other - as in marriage, they are both coupled and confrontational.

Additional Information

ISBN13/Barcode 9781906462130
ISBN10 1906462135
Author Dorothy Canfield Fisher
Binding Paperback
Date Published 23 Oct 2014
Frequency No
Report Date N/A
Pages 280
Publisher Persephone Books

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