The Ladies of Grace Adieu : and Other Stories, Paperback Book

The Ladies of Grace Adieu : and Other Stories Paperback

4 out of 5 (9 ratings)


Faerie is never as far away as you think. Sometimes you find you have crossed an invisible line and must cope, as best you can, with petulant princesses, vengeful owls, ladies who pass their time embroidering terrible fates or with endless paths in deep, dark woods and houses that never appear the same way twice.

The heroines and heroes bedevilled by such problems in these fairy tales include a conceited Regency clergyman, an eighteenth-century Jewish doctor and Mary, Queen of Scots, as well as two characters from "Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell: Strange himself and the Raven King".


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 256 pages, B&W
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Historical fiction
  • ISBN: 9780747592402

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Showing 1 - 5 of 9 reviews.

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Review by

If Jane Austen had written fantasy it would probably be like this. Set in the same alternative England of Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, but 600 pages thinner. I like it.

Review by

The Ladies of Grace Adieu, by Miss Susanna Clarke – a Critickal ReviewI have had cause to speak of Miss Clarke’s writings before, in connexion with her work Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, and therein the chief critickism I had to make was as to the length of that novel, which I judged to be some two hundred pages (out of eight hundred) too long. No such cavil attends the remarks I wish to make of this present collection, which consists of a number of shorter tales, set within the same fantastickal and fascinating other-England of the longer book. Each and all are nothing less than a delight from beginning to end. Miss Clarke has a remarkable facility for evoking the strange and alarming world of Faerie, and creates a truly enchanting atmosphere when writing of it and of the ways in which men and women can become entangled in it. As if that were not enough, she swims in the English language as a dolphin might swim in the Ocean, playing and leaping through its currents and tides with a sly smile on her face. To read stories at once so absorbing and so witty, and with such finely drawn characters, is a rare delight, and I for one can scarcely bear to wait for her promised sequel to her original novel, and learn more of her original and marvellous other-England, and of the men and women she has peopled it with – most especially that fascinating and enigmatic figure John Uskglass, the Raven King.Addendum: I note that a moving picture is to be made of the adventures of Messrs Strange & Norrell. No good can come of this.

Review by

Really enjoyed reading this collection of short stories. I really love the way that Susanna Clarke thinks about magic and the social conventions of the time. I can see why the reviewers feel the need to compare her to Jane Austen.

Review by

Having so thoroughly enjoyed Susanna Clarke’s previous tale of magical England, <i>Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel</i>, I was pleased to find <i>The Ladies of Grace Adieu</i>, a collection of stories set in the same time period building on the same theme and using some of the previous characters.As with any anthology, the stories vary in quality, but these were all enjoyable. Almost like bookends, I found the first story, the title story of the book, and the last story, John Uskglass and the Cambrian Charcoal Burner, the most enjoyable. What sets <i>The Ladies of Grace Adieu</i> apart was the sustained sense of the macabre and the ease with which the story was visualized. The final story had a twisted sense of humor about it that had me laughing out loud while reading.If you enjoyed <i>Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel</i>, you will find this to your liking as well. This should also attract fans of fantasy and magic of the kind found in the works of Lovecraft, not Crowley. Victorian and Gothic fans should find a lot to enjoy here as well.

Review by

Clake writes great fairy tales in that the "fairy" element is what it was originally meant to be. She invokes the sinister, the dark and the unknown into the fantastic things that we have overlooked in our everyday fairy tales. Her stories feel REAL which as great as you can gt with an author.

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