Book Society


Connections Sort descending Author name Excerpt
Friends, Associates Susanna Watts
In her own more local circle, however, SW was relaxed and good company. She belonged to a Book Society . She was a close friend of the Hutton and the Coltman families and especially, in...
Literary responses Ivy Compton-Burnett
Leonard Woolf's decision proved a mistake. The book was not only praised to the skies by young, advanced reviewers, but also made the secondary Book of the Month for May by the newly-formed Book Society
Occupation Caroline Frances Cornwallis
CFC led an active life. She remarked that the political unrest of 1822 affected her because she had ordinarily my father's business to transact.
Cornwallis, Caroline Frances. Selections from the Letters of Caroline Frances Cornwallis. Power, M. C.Editor , Trübner and Co., 1864.
She took part in the Book Society while she lived...
Occupation Pamela Frankau
She participated in Brains Trusts, both on the famous BBC television programme and as a charity event for the Cenacle Convent in Hampstead. She read books for the Book Society jury, but found this...
Occupation Rumer Godden
While living in Highgate RG took to organizing readings: at Foyles bookshop, promoting young poets; at Kenwood House; and for the Arts Council , where she spent two years on the Poetry Panel...
Occupation Pamela Hansford Johnson
PHJ worked occasionally for the BBC from the late 1940s. She later became one of the Critics team (which meant regular recording sessions), and sat on the committee of the Book Society , which she...
Publishing Pamela Frankau
At the outset of her career, in the years following Marriage of Harlequin, magazines paid her fantastic prices for short stories.
Stern, G. B. ...And did he stop and speak to you?. Henry Regnery, 1958.
This, at the time, meant twenty-five pounds or more. On one occasion...
Publishing Dorothy Whipple
Again she felt sure the book would be a failure, judging it not properly thought out in the beginning, about nothing—stale, flat.
Whipple, Dorothy. Random Commentary. Michael Joseph, 1966.
Nevertheless she giggled at the thought of it as a defective offspring...
Reception Barbara Pym
The sales of this second novel nearly doubled those of Pym's first: Excellent Women sold 5,477 copies in the two months to June 1952, while Some Tame Gazelle sold only 3,722 in the thirteen years...
Reception E. M. Delafield
Diary of a Provincial Lady received positive reviews, though some critics also drew attention to its limitations. Henry Seidel Canby praised EMD in The Saturday Review of Literature as one of the really skilful novelists...
Reception Vita Sackville-West
Woolf reported reading the novel all in a gulp with pleasure in bed; very well done I think.
Woolf, Virginia. The Letters of Virginia Woolf. Nicolson, Nigel and Joanne TrautmannEditors , Hogarth Press, 1980.
5: 214
It was a Book Society Choice, recommended by Clemence Dane and Hugh Walpole , and...
Reception Muriel Spark
This novel was chosen a Book Society recommendation (of which between six and ten were selected per month); it was not the choice of the month, since the panel felt it was too morbid—deeply...
Reception Pamela Frankau
Reviews were highly positive. The Sunday Times said that PFuses a large canvas with great deftness, and her dialogue is a joy.
Frankau, Pamela. The Willow Cabin. Pan Books, 1966.
back cover
John o'London's mentioned her near-genius for story-telling, and the Observer...
Reception Freya Stark
Recommended by the Book Society and the Book Guild , The Southern Gates of Arabia also received high praise in the Daily Telegraph, among other papers. FS , rather surprisingly, was compared to Jane Austen
Reception Christopher St John
The reviewer in British Book News wrote: This admirable volume forms a valuable complement to [Smyth's] own autobiographical works, which are minor masterpieces of English prose.
British Book News. British Council.
(1959): 345
The biography became a Book Society book...


By April 1929
The Book Society (first conceived of by Arnold Bennett ) was launched by Hugh Walpole with himself as chairman; it was the first such society in Britain.
The Book Guild was funded, on the model of the Book Society of the previous year, to cater to the needs of the intelligent but not academic (middle-brow) reader.
Hodder and Stoughton , along with Alan Bott of the Book Society , founded Pan Books Limited , with Aubrey Forshaw as the managing director.