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Daniel Mallory Ortberg, author of The Merry Spinster, praises the caustic wit of mid-century novelist Barbara Pym.

It was Carrie Frye, former managing editor of idiosyncratic news website The Awl who set my feet on the path of righteousness when she described Barbara Pym’s work as “spinster drag novels” and instructed me to hold off on Crampton Hodnet until after I’d taken a crack at Excellent Women. I’d had a vague sense of Pym’s oeuvre before that, of course—I could conjure up dim pictures of a mid-century British woman standing in front of a kitchen sink, a

  • Words:
    Daniel Mallory Ortberg
  • Photograph:
    Courtesy and © of The Barbara Pym Society

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  • Words:
    Daniel Mallory Ortberg
  • Photograph:
    Courtesy and © of The Barbara Pym Society
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