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The Sugar Mother
Elizabeth Jolley

A New York Times Notable Book

Edwin Page, a fussy middle-aged professor, no sooner bids farewell to his obstetrician wife, Cecilia, who accepted a fellowship abroad, when his new neighbors, Mrs. Botts and her sexy, twentyish daughter, Leila, arrive. Since they’re locked out of their house, Edwin invites them in—and then can’t get them to leave. He becomes obsessed with Leila and convinces himself that she is a perfect surrogate mother for the childless Cecilia. “Wickedly amusing ... subversive” (New York Times Book Review), The Sugar Mother undoes the institution of marriage.

“Jolley’s warmest novel, her most moving, and possibly the best introduction to her fiction.”
The New York Times Book Review

“Humor, suspense, and exquisite characterization.... Jolley has us in her able grip.”
The New Yorker

A droll domestic comedy…emotionally astute and, at times much a character study as it is a thriller...”
The Washington Post

Elizabeth Jolley was born in 1923 in England and moved to Australia when she was in her thirties. She published her first book when she was fifty-three and went on to become one of Australia’s most celebrated authors. In the United States, her novels were excerpted in The New Yorker and elsewhere, and critically acclaimed. Her works include Foxybaby, Miss Peabody’s Inheritance, Mr. Scobie’s Riddle, and The Vera Wright Trilogy. She died in 2007.

Paperback / $15.00 (Can $18.50) / ISBN 978-0-89255-362-4 / 212 pages / Fiction