The Peppered Moth

The Peppered Moth

Book - 2001 | 1st U.S. ed.
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Houghton
Bessie Bawtry is a young girl living in the early 1900s in Breaseborough, a mining town in South Yorkshire, England. Unusually gifted, she longs to escape a life burdened by unquestioned tradition. She studies patiently, dreaming of the day when she will take the entrance exam for Cambridge and be able to leave her narrow world. A generation later, Bessie's daughter Chrissie feels a similar impulse to expand her horizons, which she in turn passes on to her own daughter.

Nearly a century later, Bessie's granddaughter, Faro Gaulden, finds herself listening to a lecture on genetics and biological determinism. She has returned to Breaseborough and wonders at the families who remained in the humble little town where Bessie grew up. Confronted with what would have been her life had her grandmother stayed, she finds herself faced with difficult questions. Is she really so different from the plain South Yorkshire locals? As she soon learns, the past has a way of reasserting itself-not unlike the peppered moth that was once thought to be nearing extinction but is now enjoying a sudden unexplained resurgence.

The Peppered Moth is a brilliantly conceived novel, full of irony, sadness, and humor.


From England's highly acclaimed author comes a new novel-a masterfully crafted portrait of three generations,a family strikingly similar to her own.



Baker & Taylor
As Faro Gaulden listens to a lecture on genetic inheritance, she wonders why some people live in one place generation after generation whereas others feel the need for continuous movement, exploring the concepts of genetics and individuality.

Harcourt Publishing
Bessie Bawtry is a young girl living in the early 1900s in Breaseborough, a mining town in South Yorkshire, England. Unusually gifted, she longs to escape a life burdened by unquestioned tradition. She studies patiently, dreaming of the day when she will take the entrance exam for Cambridge and be able to leave her narrow world. A generation later, Bessie's daughter Chrissie feels a similar impulse to expand her horizons, which she in turn passes on to her own daughter.

Nearly a century later, Bessie's granddaughter, Faro Gaulden, finds herself listening to a lecture on genetics and biological determinism. She has returned to Breaseborough and wonders at the families who remained in the humble little town where Bessie grew up. Confronted with what would have been her life had her grandmother stayed, she finds herself faced with difficult questions. Is she really so different from the plain South Yorkshire locals? As she soon learns, the past has a way of reasserting itself-not unlike the peppered moth that was once thought to be nearing extinction but is now enjoying a sudden unexplained resurgence.

The Peppered Moth is a brilliantly conceived novel, full of irony, sadness, and humor.



Blackwell North Amer
It is 1912 and Bessie Bawtry is a small child living in Breaseborough, a South Yorkshire mining town. Unusually gifted, she sits quietly and studies hard, waiting for the day when she can sit the Cambridge entrance exam and escape the kind of life her ancestors have never even thought to question. Her parents are in awe of her - who is this swan-child, is she a freak? (Where did she get her notions? Who did she think she was?)
Nearly a century later Bessie's granddaughter, Faro Gaulden, is listening to a lecture on genetic inheritance. She has returned to the depressed little town where Bessie grew up and all around her she sees the families who have stayed there for longer than anyone can remember. Faro's father was a desperate, wild, drinking man, the scion of part-Jewish, part-Polish, part-German refugees. But for all her exotic ancestry and glamour, has Faro really travelled any further than her Breaseborough kin?

Publisher: New York : Harcourt, c2001.
Edition: 1st U.S. ed.
ISBN: 9780151005215
0151005214
9780156007191
0156007193
Characteristics: 369 p. ; 24 cm.

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Gyngersnap
May 24, 2012

I loved this book. I didn't find it at all disappointing, as the library reviews said I would. I've read everything Margaret Drabble has written, and I consider The Peppered Moth one of her best novels, and Bessie Bawtry one of her most interesting characters. Couldn't put it down.

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dcp
Jan 19, 2012

This was an extremely interesting book - told from the point of view of three women: Grandmother, mother and daughter. Ms Drabble surely has a way with words.

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santiano9
Aug 07, 2011

Read a good G&M review of a more recent Margaret Drabble book so gave this one which was avaiable a try.

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