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  • Published: 27 March 2008
  • ISBN: 9780141182827
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 224
  • RRP: $22.99

The Member of the Wedding




'Rarely has emotional turbulence been so delicately conveyed' The New York Times

With delicacy of perception and memory, humour and pathos, Carson McCullers spreads before us the three phases of a weekend crisis in the life of a motherless twelve-year-old girl. Within the span of a few hours, the irresistible, hoydenish Frankie passionately plays out her fantasies at her elder brother's wedding. Through a perilous skylight we look into the mind of a child torn between her yearning to belong and the urge to run away.

  • Published: 27 March 2008
  • ISBN: 9780141182827
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 224
  • RRP: $22.99

About the author

Carson McCullers

Carson McCullers was born at Columbus, Georgia, in 1917. She was always a delicate person and as a young adult she began to suffer from strokes, and by the age of thirty-one she was paralysed down her left side. For a while she could only use one finger to type, and for years before her death could not sit at a desk to work. In 1938 she married James Reeves McCullers, a corporal in the US army. The marriage was not a success and they divorced. They did, however, keep in touch and subsequently remarried, separating finally in 1953; he later committed suicide.
She was established as a writer by the time she reached her twenties but it was not until she published The Heart is a Lonely Hunter at the age of twenty-three, that she won widespread recognition. Her other works include Reflections in a Golden Eye (1941), The Member of the Wedding (1946; winner of the 1950 New York Critics Award, also staged as a play in London), The Ballad of the Sad Café (1951), The Square Root of Wonderful (1958), a play, Clock Without Hands (1961), Sweet as a Pickle, Clean as a Pig (1964) and The Mortgaged Heart (published posthumously in 1972). She was a Guggenheim Fellow in 1942-3 and again in 1946, and received an award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters in 1945; she was also a Fellow of the Academy. She lived in Nyack, New York, until her death in 1967.
Graham Greene wrote of her: 'Miss McCullers and perhaps Mr Faulkner are the only writers since the death of D. H. Lawrence with an original poetic sensibility. I prefer Miss McCullers to Mr Faulkner because she writes more clearly; I prefer her to D. H. Lawrence because she has no message.'

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Praise for The Member of the Wedding

Entirely winning ... A probing novel about a youngster with an unlimited gift for creating fantasies in a Southern town ... Rarely has emotional turbulence been so delicately conveyed

The New York Times

The greatest prose writer that the South produced ... She has examined the heart of man with an understanding that no other writer can hope to surpass

Tennessee Williams

Of all the Southern writers, she is the most apt to endure

Gore Vidal