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The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides

The Marriage Plot

Jeffrey Eugenides

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Selected by Sarah Broadhurst

Ten years on from his Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Eugenides delivers a witty, well written and wholehearted coming of age story. Set in the early 80s and described by The Times as ‘One Day with George Eliot thrown in’ The Marriage Plot follows three Brown University students as they navigate life and triangular relationships.

If you like Jeffrey Eugenides you might also like to read books by Philip Hensher, Jonathan Franzen and Jennifer Egan.

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The Marriage Plot by Jeffrey Eugenides

The new novel from the bestselling author of Middlesex and The Virgin Suicides. Brown University, 1982. Madeleine Hanna, dutiful English student and incurable romantic, is writing her thesis on Jane Austen and George Eliot -- authors of the great marriage plots. As Madeleine studies the age-old motivations of the human heart, real life, in the form of two very different men, intervenes. Leonard Bankhead, brilliant scientist and charismatic loner, attracts Madeleine with an intensity that she seems powerless to resist. Meanwhile her old friend Mitchell Grammaticus, a theology student searching for some kind of truth in life, is certain of at least one thing -- that he and Madeleine are destined to be together. But as all three leave college, they will have to figure out how they want their own marriage plot to end.


'If you were ever young and thought you knew what you wanted, if you ever imagined that no one could feel such intensity of emotion as you, if you ever had your dreams dashed and your heart broken, then this is the book for you'
The Times

'I adored The Marriage Plot ! David Nicholls'One Day with George Eliot thrown in
Erica Wagner, The Times, Books of the Year

'I gorged myself on The Marriage Plot' Geoff Dyer

'A marvellous, compulsive storyteller; he reminds us that while love may not always triumph, it follows its own wayward course to the end' Sunday Telegraph

'Where it excels is in pinpointing human emotions and in capturing the giddy flux of young love. As Mitchell says, There were some books that reached through the noise of life to grab you by the collar and speak only of the truest things. Funny, poignant and insightful, this is one of those books' Sebastian Shakespeare

About the Author

Jeffrey Eugenides

Jeffrey Eugenides — winner of the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for Middlesex — was born in Detroit, Michigan in 1960, the third son of an American-born father whose Greek parents immigrated from Asia Minor and an American mother of Anglo-Irish descent. Eugenides was educated at public and private schools, graduated magna cum laude from Brown University, and received an MA in English and Creative Writing from Stanford University in 1986. Two years later, in 1988, he published his first short story.

His fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The Yale Review, Best American Short Stories, The Gettysburg Review and Granta's ‘Best of Young American Novelists’. His first novel, The Virgin Suicides, was published in 1993, and has since been translated into fifteen languages and made into a major motion picture. His second novel, Middlesex, was published in paperback in September 2003 and has been selected by Waterstone's as one of their top 100 books of the last 25 years.

Eugenides is the recipient of many awards, including the Pulitzer Prize, fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and The National Foundation for the Arts, a Whiting Writers' Award, and the Harold D. Vursell Award from The American Academy of Arts and Letters. In the past few years he has been a Fellow of the Berliner Künstlerprogramm of the DAAD and of the American Academy in Berlin.

Jeffrey Eugenides lives in Berlin with his wife and daughter.

Author photo © Karen Yamauchi

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Book Info

Publication date

12th April 2012


Jeffrey Eugenides

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Fourth Estate Ltd an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers


416 pages


Literary Fiction
Relationship Stories
eBook Favourites