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Mary Wesley entry: Overview screen.
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Overview
Writing
Life
Writing and Life
Timeline
Excerpts
Works By
Mary Wesley won some notoriety by beginning her writing career proper at the age of seventy, when she published her first novel for adults. After this she kept up for some time the rate of one new book a year. (Before this she had published two of her three novels for children and drafted several adult works.) Late in life she added a volume that combines memoir with topographical writing. Her comic, satirical fiction, in which middle-aged or elderly female protagonists look back at their early lives (often shadowed by war) and reflect on sexual indiscretions (often still continuing), won her very great if not enduring popularity; she became known for sexually explicit writing, in comic or horrific, non-idealised style. Patrick Parrinder regards her as "a last celebrant of the vanishing life of the English upper and upper-middle classes." Bibliographic Citation link.
Milestones
24 June 1912 Mary Farmar (later MW) was born at her parents' home at Englefield Green in Surrey, on the edge of Windsor Great Park, her parents' third child. Bibliographic Citation link.
March 1984 MW published her second novel for adults, The Camomile Lawn, about a London family living through the Blitz. Bibliographic Citation link.
1 October 2001 MW published a book of memoirs and description, Part of the Scenery: A Celebration of Life in the West Country; it resembles a travel book about the place she had made her home. Bibliographic Citation link.
30 December 2002 MW died of cancer at her home at Totnes in Devon; she had also suffered from gout. Bibliographic Citation link.
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