What Maisie Knew
After her parents' bitter divorce, young Maisie Farange finds herself shuttled between her selfish mother and vain father, who value her only as a means for provoking each other. And when both take lovers and remarry, Maisie - solitary, observant and wise beyond her years - is drawn into an... show more
After her parents' bitter divorce, young Maisie Farange finds herself shuttled between her selfish mother and vain father, who value her only as a means for provoking each other. And when both take lovers and remarry, Maisie - solitary, observant and wise beyond her years - is drawn into an increasingly entangled adult world of intrigue and sexual betrayal, until she is finally compelled to choose her own future. Published in 1897 when Henry James was becoming increasingly experimental with narrative technique and fascinated by the idea of the child's-eye view, "What Maisie Knew" is a subtle, intricate yet devastating portrayal of an innocent adrift in a corrupt society.
Publish date: January 7th 1986
Publisher: Penguin Classics
Pages no: 275
Edition language: English
, European Literature
, British Literature
, Book Club
, Literary Fiction
, 19th Century
I read The Ambassadors and The Portrait of a Lady sometime in the early ‘90s, when I was in graduate school. They passed through my consciousness with nary a ripple; the impression that I carried away was…boredom. I wasn’t able to engage with any of the characters, and the elite social milieu of lat...
One of Henry James' short novels, Maisie is a pretty good way to see if James is for you before wading into one of his big novels like Wings of a Dove or Golden Bowl. All the qualities that make James' writing wonderful to some and unreadable to others are present as much in his shorter works as hi...
Book Circle Reads 43Rating: 3.75* of fiveThe Book Description: What Maisie Knew (1897) represents one of James's finest reflections on the rites of passage from wonder to knowledge, and the question of their finality. The child of violently divorced parents, Maisie Farange opens her eyes on a distin...