This moving masterpiece by one of Australia’s leading novelists―now in its entirety―inaugurates Persea’s series of Elizabeth Jolley revivals. Set in 1940s wartime England, the trilogy follows young Vera, who leaves her cultivated Midlands home to become a nurse in a military hospital and is catapulted into adulthood through unorthodox love entanglements with both men and women, two illegitimate children, and finally emigration to Australia, where, from her new vantage point―now a doctor and writer―she looks back on her life’s journey. Combining the beauty of Virginia Woolf with the spare, heartbreaking insightfulness of Jean Rhys, the trilogy is both a literary tour de force and an accessible, universal portrait of a woman in search of sustaining love.
The concluding volume, The Georges’ Wife, is published here for the first time in the US. The first two volumes have long been out of print. North American readers can now experience “the most ambitious and accomplished work in Jolley’s oeuvre” (J. M. Coetzee).