Miranda France

Age Shall Not Weary Them

The Purple Swamp Hen and Other Stories

By

Fig Tree 197pp £14.99 order from our bookshop

Lively by name, lively by nature: if there is one quality that unites the fifteen stories in this new collection, it is the author’s curiosity about life. Most are told from a single, female point of view, with characters musing on relationships and the events that have shaped their lives so far. The protagonists tend to be educated women – writers, artists, a copy editor, a BBC employee, an academic, a researcher, a retired spy (the title story, featuring a purple swamp hen which is resident in one of the gardens of ancient Pompeii, is a colourful exception). They are the kind of women who get invited to spend weekends in the Cotswolds at the second homes of wealthier friends who work in the City. They are adept at considering details and working out connections. They are aware of the need to make difficult accommodations in a marriage.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • In 'Silenced Voices' reports the ongoing story of the human rights lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh, who has been… ,
    • The mystery of Jack the Ripper's identity has long been agonised over. But what do we know about his victims?… ,
    • A piece of Literary Review history from way back in 1983: John Haffenden talks to the great Iris Murdoch. ,
    • Britain’s only travelling lit fest, the Garden Museum Literary Festival is heading to Houghton Hall, Norfolk, for a… ,
    • 'The 19th-century German sage is not my idea of a pleasant travel companion' goes hiking with Friedr… ,
    • If you want ideas about what to read next, sign up to our free email newsletter, and get book reviews, archive mate… ,
    • 'The heroic male nude could not, I think, be used today to signify civic pride and glory', as Michelangelo’s 'David… ,