This book is one of my favorite works of fiction. However, stating that has earned me more than one concerned glance over the years. The thing about this book is, even sixty years after its publication, it is something that many young girls, and young people in general, still relate to. Truly the most wonderful thing about this novel is its truth and vulnerability, both of which are often the reason people turn away from it. It is meant to be raw, and honest, and vulnerable, as most of Sylvia’s work is, and sitting with that can open your eyes to the world around you and leave you feeling much less alone when you’re struggling. I truly cannot recommend this book enough. Recommended By Aster A., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
A realistic and emotional novel about a woman battling mental illness and societal pressures written by the iconic American writer Sylvia Plath.
"It is this perfectly wrought prose and the freshness of Plath's voice in The Bell Jar that make this book enduring in its appeal." — USA Today
The Bell Jar chronicles the crack-up of Esther Greenwood: young, brilliant, beautiful, and enormously talented, but slowly going under--maybe for the last time. Sylvia Plath masterfully draws the reader into Esther's breakdown with such intensity that Esther's neurosis becomes completely understandable and even rational, as probable and accessible an experience as going to the movies. Such thorough exploration of the dark and harrowing corners of the psyche — and the profound collective loneliness that modern society has yet to find a solution for - is an extraordinary accomplishment, and has made The Bell Jar a haunting American classic.
This P.S. edition features extra insights into the book, including author interviews, recommended reading, and more.
"The first-person narrative fixes us there, in the doctor's office, in the asylum, in the madness, with no reassuring vacations when we can keep company with the sane and listen to their lectures." — Washington Post Book World
"It is this perfectly wrought prose and the freshness of Plath's voice in The Bell Jar that make this book enduring in its appeal and make it as meaningful...as it was 25 years ago." — USA Today
"As clear and readable as it is witty and disturbing." — New York Times
About the Author
Sylvia Plath (1932-63) was born in Boston, Massachusetts, and studied at Smith College. In 1955 she went to Cambridge University on a Fulbright fellowship, where she met and later married Ted Hughes. She published one collection of poems in her lifetime, The Colossus (1960), and a novel, The Bell Jar (1963). Her Collected Poems, which contains her poetry written from 1956 until her death, was published in 1981 and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry. Other posthumous publications include Ariel, her landmark publication, Crossing the Water, Winter Trees, Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams and The Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962.