Mrs. Dalloway

Mrs. Dalloway

Book - 2005 | First editon
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A poignant portrayal of the thoughts and events that comprise one day in a woman's life.
Publisher: Orlando : A Harvest Book, Harcourt, Inc., [2005]
Edition: First editon
ISBN: 9780156030359
Call Number: FICTION WOOLF 2005
Characteristics: lxviii, 225 pages : map ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: Scott, Bonnie Kime 1944-


From Library Staff

”Virginia Woolf's perfectly constructed Mrs. Dalloway is the study of a wealthy London political hostess and her society on one particular June day in 1923. Woolf's narrative shows us the hidden mechanisms behind Clarissa Dalloway's actions as she prepares for a large party that evening, ... Read More »

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AndreaG_KCMO Apr 22, 2020

It only took me a full week to get through the first third of the book and finally begin enjoying it! Brilliant characterization; plot is, of course, minimal in Woolf's work. That and the pacing were my initial obstacles to moving forward and enjoying the novel.

Apr 10, 2020

A stream of conscience style of writing on the stage of New York and its high society blue bloods, told from the perspective of Clarissa Dalloway wandering through her memories of the past and lost loves. This is a fabulous book and the writing style is everything.

The Between the Lines Book Group will be reading Mrs. Dalloway in September 2020.

Jul 24, 2019

From the very first sentence I couldn't help but be roped into Mrs. Dalloway. I first read it for a class in college, and this novel started a long appreciation for Woolf and her work. Mrs. Dalloway is, perhaps, best enjoyed when read aloud with your best British accent.

Jun 21, 2019

The reader follows many characters as they go through a single day, before all except one gather at Clarissa Dalloway’s (Mrs.Dalloway’s) party. Woolf stuffed a lot of different topics into the novel, such as women’s confinement to the domestic sphere, consequences of war, death, mental illness, and LGBTQ relationships but the exploration of “distance” jumped out the most.

There are physical distance and distance in terms of time, but most importantly, there is a discordance between psychological/emotional distance and apparent intimacy. For example, Clarissa never asks where her husband Richard is, keeping a comfortable distance between her husband and herself. In fact, she rejected Peter’s proposal partly because she knew that they would not be able to keep that distance as a couple. Richard, feeling strangely threatened by Peter’s return, rushes home to tell Clarissa that he loves her but finds himself unable to do so. Septimus, suffering from PTSD from the war, sits with his wife (so they’re physically together) but is emotionally alone, as she fails to understand the root of his behavior and wallows in her own misery. By following multiple characters and being omniscient, we see this discordance.

Yet contrast not only holds for interpersonal but lao intrapersonal relationships. The characters are all busy examining themselves through (what they imagine to be) other people’s perspectives, only to become more frustrated by their hidden insecurities. They also judge others’ motives through their own biased lenses, such as when Clarissa thinks that Septimus committed suicide to keep his integrity in life, when in fact it is because she herself is struggling with that whole idea. So ironically, although there are so many characters in the novel and they are all interconnected, each feels alone, which speaks to the human condition and is especially highlighted by the novel’s setting of post-war traumatized society.

For more book reviews, visit me on Instagram @ RandomStuffIRead

Jun 19, 2019

book group

Dec 26, 2018

Recommended to me by a writing instructor. This is a profoundly intimate story in which the author both describes the characters and weaves the story entirely through their individual points of view. Taking place in a single day in post WWI London, Clarissa Dalloway prepares for a party at her home, and as the story unfolds we are witnesses to the very though processes of each character, major or minor. I needed to read each chapter twice through in order to get my head into the style of this unique novel.

Oct 29, 2018

I didn't hate this book, I didn't love this book. I found the story to be nothing special but having studied it in class this is what Woolf was going for. I don't think I personally would read it again but I see the appeal of this modern fiction book!

Oct 02, 2018

Downtowner's Read It / Watch It Selection -
Published in 1925, Mrs. Dalloway was a book ahead of its time, told within one 24 hour time period.

My heart ached for Septimus whose transformation by the war was enormous and Woolf addresses the horrors inflicted upon the soldier(s) of WWI in a forward manner painting an image of a man who would rather die than having a doctor steal his soul.

Mrs. Dalloway (Clarissa) is the main protagonist and wife of a government worker who suffers from a bit of anxiety but finds respite in her urban surroundings where she can experience the exquisite moments of life, and of course, have parties.

Elizabeth is the daughter of Clarissa and Richard Dalloway who attracts both men and women but prefers a lesbian relationship with Dori Kilman, whom Clarissa cannot stand.

Suffering is a theme throughout the book as is repression, memory, and the past. All of which are universal and of course, timeless.

DBRL_ReginaF May 19, 2018

No one will ever accuse Virginia Woolf of being gripping or action packed. I can appreciate it for what it was at the time and I'm glad I read it but I won't feel the need to reread it.

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Apr 10, 2020

CORI D. MORRIS thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over


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