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Penguin Books Ltd (UK)
A new edition of the innovative, emotionally complex novel.
After her parents' bitter divorce, young Maisie Farange finds herself shuttled between her selfish mother and vain father, who value her only as a means for provoking each other. Maisie-solitary, observant, and wise beyond her years-is drawn into an increasingly entangled adult world of intrigue and sexual betrayal until she is finally compelled to choose her own future. Published in 1897 as Henry James was experimenting with narrative technique and fascinated by the idea of the child's-eye view, "What Maisie Knew" is a subtle yet devastating portrayal of an innocent adrift in a corrupt society.
Henry James was born on April 15th 1843 in New York. He was the brother of the philosopher and psychologist William James. He spent a great deal of his life in Europe, especially England. He is best known for his cosmopolitan and often haunting portraits of European and American life. His most famous fictional works include The Portrait of a Lady (1881), What Maisie Knew (1897), The Turn of the Screw (1898), The Wings of the Dove (1902), The Ambassadors (1903) and The Golden Bowl (1904). He also wrote literary criticism, most famously The Art of the Fiction (1884). He died on February 28th 1916. Christopher Ricks is Professor of the Humanities at Boston University, where he has taught since 1986, and Co-Director of the Editorial Institute. He was formerly King Edward VII Professor of English Literature at the University of Cambridge. He has written books on Milton, Tennyson, Keats, Eliot, Beckett and Bob Dylan, and he has edited the poems of Tennyson, the early uncollected poems of Eliot, the selected poems of James Henry, and the poems of Samuel Menashe, as well as two anthologies.