Saturday, 19 March 2011


'At the great age of eighty-five Mrs Parkington was a powerful matriarchal figure in her family. She enjoyed life still, drank a half-pint of champagne every evening, and knew her own mind.'
When I read Rachel's review of Mrs Parkington, a 1942 novel by Louis Bromfield, I knew I'd have to get hold of a copy. And I was delighted that my 1p bargain from Amazon, when it arrived a couple of days ago, turned out to be a highly-desirable, old-fashioned Penguin - with a charming pen-and-ink cover sketch of Mrs P, with her Pekingese and her bottle of champagne.
How could I resist a matriarch who drank a half-pint of champagne every evening?
Mrs P is my new role model for when I'm 85.
(If only I'd thought about the price of champagne when I started my pension plan!)

10 comments:

elizabethm said...

I intend to start practising for being eighty five now, in fact this evening just as soon as I have had a bath. I have been stacking logs this afternoon so can't move seamlessly into champagne drinking!

mary said...

Neither can I, Elizabeth. Not a drop of champagne in the house, sadly!

bookssnob said...

Glad to hear you're enjoying it, Mary! The Penguin edition sounds much nicer than my rather musty hardcover...perhaps I'll trade it in when I get home!

mary said...

Slightly foxed, but not smelly, Rachel!

Mystica said...

What a lovely way to live at 85!

mary said...

Beats Horlicks, doesn't it, Mystica?

Joan Hunter Dunn said...

Lovely post for a quiet Sunday afternoon. Alas more likely to be drinking a pint of tea rather than champagne.

mary said...

Thanks, Joan. I'm still on such a caffeine-high from the pot of coffee I drank for breakfast (Sundays only!) that maybe I'd better not join you.

Tabitha said...

Louis Bromfield lived in the next county over and I have been to his farm, now a state park, many times. Actually, my father used to swim in his pond when he was a teenager and saw Myrna Loy sitting on the bank one day. And yet I have read hardly any of his books, and didn't even know about this one, which seems like just the thing. Thanks!! I just finished reading Mrs. Miniver again. Wonderful as always.

mary said...

Hello, Tabitha. What a wonderful comment ... you must live in Ohio? I've been googling to find out more about the farm and see that Bogart/Bacall spent their honeymoon there. How thrilling to find Myrna Loy at the pond.
Now that I've finished reading Mrs Parkington (and seen the film, though it's much less subtle and complex than the book) I completely agree with Rachel's review. I think it's easier to get hold of a copy in America than it is here ... do try it, I'm sure you'd enjoy it. There's a lot more to Mrs P than a penchant for champagne.