The Seven Sisters

When circumstances compel her to start over late in her life, Candida Wilton moves from a beautiful Georgian house in lovely Suffolk to a two room, walk up flat in a run down building in central London and begins to pour her soul into a diary Candida is not exactly destitute So, is the move perversity, she wonders, a survival test, or is she punishing herself How willWhen circumstances compel her to start over late in her life, Candida Wilton moves from a beautiful Georgian house in lovely Suffolk to a two room, walk up flat in a run down building in central London and begins to pour her soul into a diary Candida is not exactly destitute So, is the move perversity, she wonders, a survival test, or is she punishing herself How will she adjust to this shabby, menacing, but curiously appealing city What can happen, at her age, to change her life In a voice that is pitch perfect, Candida describes her health club, her social circle, and her attempts at risk taking in her new life She begins friendships of sorts with other women widowed, divorced, never married, women straddled between generations And then there is a surprise pension fund windfall.
The Seven Sisters When circumstances compel her to start over late in her life Candida Wilton moves from a beautiful Georgian house in lovely Suffolk to a two room walk up flat in a run down building in central Londo

  • Title: The Seven Sisters
  • Author: Margaret Drabble
  • ISBN: 9780141197296
  • Page: 343
  • Format: Paperback
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      Posted by:Margaret Drabble
      Published :2019-02-23T16:46:21+00:00

    About the Author

    Margaret Drabble

    Dame Margaret Drabble was born in Sheffield in 1939 and was educated at Newnham College, Cambridge She is the author of eighteen novels including A Summer Bird Cage, The Millstone, The Peppered Moth, The Red Queen, The Sea Lady and most recently, the highly acclaimed The Pure Gold Baby She has also written biographies, screenplays and was the editor of the Oxford Companion to English Literature She was appointed CBE in 1980, and made DBE in the 2008 Honours list She was also awarded the 2011 Golden PEN Award for a Lifetime s Distinguished Service to Literature She is married to the biographer Michael Holroyd.

    941 Comment

    • SarahC said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      this is my favorite Margaret Drabble book to date. For this book, I would love to meet her, buy her dinner, and tell her how in awe of her I am. It is about how to love life, literature, change, yourself. There is nothing standard about this tale -- Margaret Drabble clearly raises the bar. It is wit defined.

    • Lyn Elliott said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      I came away from our book discussion group last week with a much better understanding of The Seven Sisters than I had when I finished reading it myself.I was puzzled by the structure, the triple voice shift, the apparent death of the main character (reported apparently by a cranky daughter) and what seemed to be a rather half-hearted winding up of the story.There's no doubt about the first section - here we have a woman in her mid-late 50s, divorced by her husband, living in a drab part of Londo [...]

    • David Franks said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Why do I enjoy Margaret Drabble’s books so much? I realised one day, when I was reading a passage in one of her books, it’s partly because she’s not Jane Austen. I started off, a young man, enthralled by Jane Austen, read and re-read her books until I knew them by heart. I played the Jane Austen game with like-minded friends: what did Mr Woodhouse recommend that Mrs Bates should eat at his evening party; what did Anne Elliot and Captain Benwick discuss at the dinner at the Harville’s hou [...]

    • Philip said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      The Seven Sisters is a superb novel by Margaret Drabble. Seven characters – who all happen to be women – eventually find themselves on a classically-inspired Mediterranean journey. It is a trip of literary and perhaps psychological significance. Thus extracted from their respective comfort zones – if comfort is a relevant term to describe their life-scarred lives – they react individually to their collective experience in quite different ways, differences driven by personality and person [...]

    • Nancy said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      I would genuinely enjoy sitting down for a cup of coffee with those readers who enjoyed this book; I found it dispiriting and tedious and would like to understand what I missed in my reading of this dreary tome. If this was not a selection of my book club, I would not have made it through the first 75 pages and, as it was, I plodded along without much enthusiasm until the narrator appeared to change the course of her life.Perhaps my challenge is that the narrator is a "lady of a certain age" and [...]

    • Ben Babcock said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      I went into this book without high expectations. Not only did I know little about Margaret Drabble or The Seven Sisters but I acquired this from the same person who gave me Love the One You’re With, so yeah. Provenance aside, this book turned out to be immensely satisfying. Drabble creates a main character and narrator who is fallible and sympathetic, and the story she tells is firmly grounded in realism even as she carefully interrogates the recesses of the human heart.The back of the book in [...]

    • Katherine said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      "We hadn't had time to bulid up an easy extra-mural social life" (12)."ouds that lay parallel above the horizon like Magritte baguettes" (19)."Writers have to tell. It's what they do. It's what they are for" (32)."She digresses to the forbidden subject of solitaire" (35).“The machine hasn’t got a cliché-spotter, but its cool objective format throws them into high relief” (52).“At first sight, the produce looked varied and quite tempting, but on closer inspection the charm palled” (57) [...]

    • Ensiform said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Candida Wilton, a divorcee of a certain (past middle-aged) years, lives alone in an apartment in London. Writing a diary on her new laptop, she tells of her estrangement from her daughters and her husband’s infidelity in analytical, impersonal tones. She makes a new friend or two and puts up with the occasional attentions of some old friends whom she has mixed feelings for. Then she comes into a large sum of money, and funds a trip to Tunisia in Anaeas’ shoes, bringing six other women in her [...]

    • kymdotcom said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      This book was bad for me. All I want to do now is wank about learning Latin and go back to Naples.

    • Melissa said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Oh how I wanted to like this more than I did. It begins as the diary of an older woman named Candida, who's just gotten a divorce and is living alone, estranged from her children. She makes all sorts of lovely honest statements that are full of self-pity and hyper-awareness; about the girl at her Health Club who may or may not have cancer, "I can't ask after her, because I don't know her name . . . And anyway, I don't care. I'm curious, but curiosity has nothing to do with caring." She comes in [...]

    • Jennifer said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      At the end of it all, I'm really unsure what this book is about the salvation to be found in good company? Redemption of the meek through a heady dose of independence? Travel therapy? Why I'm glad I took Latin instead of a more "practical" language?Forgive my levity, I am truly muddled - M. Drabble is the author of two of my favorite books of all time: the Realms of Gold and the Radiant Way. Both followed interesting characters, unrolled captivating plots and underscored all with questions (if n [...]

    • Bob said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      After some months abroad in far-flung literary landscapes, I tend to return to Margaret Drabble as a sort of literary comfort food, though since this may be the 17th of her 18 novels I have read, it may soon become time to look elsewhere.By contrast to what I think of as the "writer's workshop" sort of writers who take on the personae of people entirely alien to their actual experience, I rather like the fact that the protagonist of any given Drabble novel is almost always a cultivated middle-cl [...]

    • Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Candida Wilton is stuck. Her husband has left her. She is estranged from her children. She has moved off to the wilds of London and all that is keeping her grounded are her visits to the health club and writing in her journal. And then, quite unexpectedly, her friends.As one becomeswell, let's just say itOLDER is nice to reflect on the experiences of others who have passed through this time and lived to tell of their adventures. Books are a very nice way to visit these hinterlands unscathed and [...]

    • Mary said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Interesting style and fresh approach to a story of a middle-age woman who finds it necessary to begin life again after divorce.

    • Ann Canann said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      I am an American and a huge fan of the very English writer Margaret Drabble who was born in Sheffield, Yorkshire. I love her sister A.S. Byatt too. I'm sure I would love her entire family. What I really love is her delicious use of the English language, but then she is an editor of the Oxford Companion to English Literature. She makes the short list of my absolutely favorite writers. And in this book she is at the top of her form.“The Seven Sisters” is a book that speaks directly to me. It i [...]

    • Kieran Walsh said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      An interesting coming of age book, which I tend to enjoy, typically. The protagonist, however, is an unlikely subject - recently divorced headmaster's wife, with a disinterested attachment to her three children and recent arriveal in London. Along the way Candidia's life becomes rather cliched. She 'comes into' money, joins a health club, takes a night class, makes a set of new friends and goes on a cruise to Italy. The literary twist, however, is that her character barely evolves from her borin [...]

    • Deborah said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      My first Margaret Drabble. It's hard to say why you don't pick up an author sometimes - none of her books appealed to me more than what was already on my reading list. Well now I will be reading more Margaret. This book was a strange journey. So well written - the character of Candida Wilton emerging and disappearing as she writes her pseudo diary. It's almost a mystery, trying to work out what is real and what's not. Somehow all the other characters emerge too and what starts out as a fairly ne [...]

    • Melody said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      It's one of those books that make a nice little shiver run up your back and a tiny little squeeze of tears come out of your eyes when you finish. Don't know what the formula is to produce such an effect. I think it's at least one multi-faceted character, a little plot (doesn't have to be much - but I do require some plot) and some non-predictability. Yep. I think that might sum it up. And as for my reviews - I don't feel the need to report one bit of information about what the book's about. Just [...]

    • Gabi Coatsworth said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      I like Margaret Drabble, so I looked forward to reading this. its very much in her usual style, but it read like a book from the 50's or 60's. I was surprised to find references to cell phones and other 'modern' items in the book. In that sense it felt like an oddity. I think I liked it because the protagonist was about my age and lives in London I could relate to her. the structure is a little odd, but I rolled with the punches and enjoyed it.

    • Emma Scattergood said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      I'm still trying to make up my mind about this book. It is beautifully written, cleverly constructed and Drabble observes and captures the small details of relationships so well. Yet I was irritated that Candida's "change" came about by a sudden windfall and that being 60 was portrayed as being so depressing!

    • Sandy said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      This book very different from anything that I've read for a very long time. While I semi struggled to get into the story, I somehow couldn't stop reading it either. I was rewarded because the ending of the story was very interesting!

    • Sandra Lawson said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      A beautiful story demonstrating that you're never too old. I've been a Margaret Drabble fan for years and it's interesting to see how her life experiences and her current age inform her subject matter.

    • Hugh said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      A slight but charming story of a divorcee and estranged mother finding friendship and fulfilment in late middle age

    • Kevin Darbyshire said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Another reread of this wonderful story. I love the diverse characters and the way the story takes a turn towards the end. Margaret Drabble is a wonderful writer and I love the references to classical literature. I would highly recommend this book.

    • Lesley said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      This was the first Margaret Drabble book I’ve read. I enjoyed parts of it, appreciated the skill of her writing and the humour, but parts annoyed me. She obviously ‘gets’ the 60ish woman and the characters of the ‘Seven Sisters’ were well drawn. I felt I had met aspects of them in friends, family and even myself.I liked the realism of Candida’s life and enjoyed the way she appeared to take a pigeon-step approach to her voyage of self-discovery. Her character made no miraculous growth [...]

    • Joyce said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Although this reader is overly familiar with the storyline of a 50ish divorcee re-starting her life in the big city, I enjoyed The Seven Sisters very much. As a matter of fact, once I started the book I couldn't put it down. It's always refreshing to read another take on one's own situation although Candida,a doubly well-chosen name,is almost annoyingly passive at times. Yet that's a part of the process she's undertaken by moving out on her own for the first time in her life and moving to London [...]

    • LindyLouMac said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      bookcrossing/journal/4I have not read Margaret Drabble’s entire extensive list of novels, but I have always enjoyed them from as far back as I can recall. I think the first one I read was Jerusalem the Golden in 1967 and over forty years later she is still writing entertaining and literary novels. The humour and excellent characterisation is up to the author’s normal high standards.‘The Seven Sisters’ is not written in chapters but in four parts, which made it a little harder to know at [...]

    • Betty said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Betrayed and divorced, Candida moves to a sketchy neighborhood in West London and begins, slowly, to rebuild her life. When she comes into some unexpected money, she gathers friends – some old, some new – for a trip to Naples. The group of disparate women have in common an interest in Virgil, and go first to Tunisia so that they can approach Naples by sea, as Aeneas did. They leave London in a cold drizzle. In one of my favorite passages –( I am reading this in January after all )_ in her [...]

    • John said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      This, the first work I have read by Drabble left me with mixed feelings. This work traces Candida (all sorts of allusion and inferences can be made becasue of this characters name), a recent divorcee as she moves to London and slowly accumulates a diverse collection of friends. This group ultimately plans, and travels on a joint holiday to greece and other mediterranean venues.The novel is partitioned into a couple of distinct sections, the first which is told in the first person, traces Candida [...]

    • Sheri said:
      May 24, 2019 - 16:46 PM

      Candida is a middle-aged divorced woman who has recently moved to London. She wants to be away from the neighborhood where everyone knows her and knows her cheating, newly married ex-husband. She was a good wife, she thinks. Her husband Andrew is a college professor and they had a nice little house on the grounds. She doesn't miss any of it. Even though her 3rd floor small walk-up apartment is rather drab. She is going to find herself and a life that will suit her in these coming years. The book [...]

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