How to Be a Heroine: Or, What I've Learned from Reading Too Much (Paperback)

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It begins with a discussion between friends of the merits of Jane Eyre versus Cathy Earnshaw and leads the author to take another look at all her literary heroines.

— From Staff Picks - Angela


While debating literature's greatest heroines with her best friend, thirtysomething playwright Samantha Ellis has a revelation--her whole life, she's been trying to be Cathy Earnshaw of Wuthering Heights when she should have been trying to be Jane Eyre.

With this discovery, she embarks on a retrospective look at the literary ladies--the characters and the writers--whom she has loved since childhood. From early obsessions with the March sisters to her later idolization of Sylvia Plath, Ellis evaluates how her heroines stack up today. And, just as she excavates the stories of her favorite characters, Ellis also shares a frank, often humorous account of her own life growing up in a tight-knit Iraqi Jewish community in London. Here a life-long reader explores how heroines shape all our lives.

About the Author

Samantha Ellis is a playwright and journalist. The daughter of Iraqi-Jewish refugees, she grew up thinking her family had travelled everywhere by magic carpet. From an early age she knew she didn't want their version of a happy ending--marriage to a nice Iraqi-Jewish boy--so she read books to find out what she did want. Her plays include Patching Havoc, Sugar and Snow and Cling To Me Like Ivy, and she is a founding member of women's theatre company Agent 160. She lives in London.
Product Details
ISBN: 9781101872093
ISBN-10: 1101872098
Publisher: Vintage
Publication Date: February 3rd, 2015
Pages: 272
Language: English
Series: Vintage Originals