This is the story of four people in late middle-age - Edwin, Norman, Letty and Marcia - whose chief point of contact is that they work in the same office and they suffer the same problem - loneliness. Lovingly, poignantly, satirically and with much humour, Pym conducts us through their small lives and the facade they erect to defend themselves against the outside world. There is nevertheless an obstinate optimism in her characters, allowing them in their different ways to win through to a kind of hope. Barbara Pyms sensitive wit and artistry are at their most sparkling in Quartet in Autumn. An exquisite, even magnificent work of art Observer 'Barbara Pym has a sharp eye for the exact nuances of social behaviour' The Times 'The wit and style of a twentieth century Jane Austen' Harpers & Queen 'Barbara Pyms unpretentious, subtle, accomplished novels are for me the finest examples of high comedy to have appeared in England during the past 75 years . . . spectacular Sunday Times Very funny and keenly observant of the ridiculous as well as the pathetic in humanity Financial Times
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From the Back Cover
Barbara Pym’s sensitive wit and artistry are at their most sparkling in 'quartet in Autumn'. Brought together by their shared office life, fluffily faded Letty, small, wiry Norman, enigmatically eccentric Marcia and neatly devout Edwin, are an unlikely group of friends. Apart from work, they have little in common, but nevertheless find themselves frequently drawn to discuss their very different dreams and plans for the future…
‘Quartet in Autumn is immeasurably her finest work of fiction’
PAUL BAILEY, 'Evening Standard'
‘Very funny and keenly observant of the ridiculous as well as the pathetic in humanity.’
‘An alert miniaturist… her novels have a distinctive flavour, as instantly recognisable as lapsang tea.’