Sylvia Brownrigg has character development at the core of her most recent publication, Pages for Her, which is the story of two women, Flannery and Anne, each at a pivotal point, and the circumstances that lead up to their reunion. Twenty years after their passionate affair, interlaced in Brownrigg’s earlier novel Pages for You, Flannery has the opportunity once again to meet Anne, who opened a young Flannery up to this notion of love—then left her heartbroken.
Anne and Flannery now live on opposite coasts. Anne found herself in a deep, childless partnership with a fellow scholar Jasper, who recently left her. Flannery, to her own surprise, married a charismatic artist named Charles, with whom she has a young daughter. Floundering amidst her husband’s demands and personality and her personal adjustment to motherhood, Flannery has lost sight of her own self and her work. However, in her request to actually attend a conference that relates to her writing, the two women meet after twenty years, they realise that the passion has not left, although expectedly suppressed. This realisation and reunion opens up a whole new opportunity to rediscover not only each other, but more intimately themselves.
Sylvia Brownrigg is the author of six works of fiction, including novels Pages for You and The Delivery Room. Sylvia’s work has been included on the NY Times Notable list and the LA Times Best Books of the Year. She reviews for the NY Times, The Guardian, and the TLS, and has also taught at the American University in Paris.
Pages for Her is an in depth exploration of sexuality, character, motherhood, with little in the manoeuvring of plot, but plenty when it comes to the development of Anne and more evidently, Flannery. The writing glues you to the pages, as you witness the protagonists rekindle their love and friendship. Pages For You and Pages For Her have a Before Sunrise and Before Sunset feel to them, if we were to visualise the goings on in a cinematic fashion. And just as satisfying as it was to watch Julie and Ethan reunite, it is much the same to see Anne and Flannery to come together. It’s a wonderfully explorative novel with warm heart at it’s core.
Pages For Her is available now, via Picador Books.