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Almost English - Charlotte Mendelson

Almost English - Charlotte Mendelson
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Title: Almost English

Author:  Charlotte Mendelson

ISBN:  9781447219972

Weight:  990g

Signed first edition, first printing

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Almost English by Charlotte Mendelson

Home is a foreign country: they do things differently there.

In a tiny flat in West London, sixteen-year-old Marina lives with her emotionally delicate mother, Laura, and three ancient Hungarian relatives.  Imprisoned by her family’s crushing expectations and their fierce un-English pride, by their strange traditions and stranger foods, she knows she must escape.  But the place she runs to makes her feel even more of an outsider.

At Combe Abbey, a traditional English public school for which her family have sacrificed everything, she realises she has made a terrible mistake.  She is the awkward half-foreign girl who doesn’t know how to fit in, flirt or even be.  And as a semi-Hungarian Londoner, who is she?  In the meantime, her mother Laura, an alien in this strange universe, has her own painful secrets to deal with, especially the return of the last man she’d expect back in her life.  She isn’t noticing that, at Combe Abbey, things are starting to go terribly wrong.

Peer & Press Reviews

Charlotte Mendelson’s fourth novel is a deliciously funny tale of dysfunctional families.  The Farkases recall characters from fairy tales or Roald Dahl: an all-female household comprising three pensioners, an abandoned wife and a teenage girl squeezed into a tiny flat “in the barely respectable depths of Bayswater”.  Reading Mendelson’s easy, assured prose is like sinking into something soft and velvety.

The Telegraph

Charlotte Mendelson is much admired by the cognoscenti…  The account of a girl from a family of Hungarian aunts, dealing with love and old lechers at a ghastly boarding school in the 1980s, is sheer bliss – pure rueful comedy with endless resourcefulness…  I adore her novels and wish there were many more of them.

Philip Hensher, The Spectator

Mendelson’s novels are perfectly balanced observations of human nature captured in all its hideous glories.  As intelligent as it is funny, her writing is brilliant…  A joy.

Viv Groskop, Observer

Bibliographic Info

Attribute Details
Title: Almost English
Author:
Book Features
Edition / printing: First edition, first printing
Book features: Royal blue cover with gold coloured text on spine, dark red endpapers, and gold coloured decorative head and tail bands.
Overall condition: Fine / Very fine (for more info, see our article on condition grades)
Signed: Yes – on the title page
Book Stats
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Imprint: Mantle
Awards and prizes:

Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction 2014 – longlisted

Man Booker Prize 2013 – longlisted

Publication date:
Printed by: CPI Group (UK) Ltd, Croydon
ISBN 13: 9781447219972
ISBN 10: 144721997X
Format: Hardcover with dust jacket
Pages: 384
Size (h x w x d): 222 x 142 x 37mm
Design Credits
Author photo: Kate Eshelby
Jacket design: Pan Macmillan art department

Collectors Notes & Author Links

  • Mendelson appeared on Waterstones’ 25 authors of the future list in 2007.  Building on this success, her third novel, When We Were Bad, was shortlisted for the Orange Broadband Prize for Fiction in 2008.
  • Her fourth novel, Almost English, followed suit by being longlisted for the 2014 Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction (formerly the Orange).  It was also longlisted for the 2013 Man Booker Prize.
  • In addition to her novels, she has written and reviewed for the Guardian, the TLS, the Independent on Sunday, the Observer and many other notable periodicals.
  • To read more, you can visit Charlotte Mendelson’s website or follow her on Twitter.  Both are a rich source of info on Charlotte’s life, books and future projects.

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