Girl in a Blue Dress

Deborah Friedell writes:

Too late, David Copperfield realises that he has married an imbecile: Dora is good-looking and affectionate, but she’s useless with a cookery book and incapable of managing servants. She calls her husband ‘Doady’ and begs him to accept that she can never be more to him than a ‘child-wife’. Worst of all, she will never be able to appreciate his genius. David prepares himself for a life of grief: ‘There can be no disparity in marriage like unsuitability of mind and purpose.’ He doesn’t suffer long. Dora develops a never specified illness, which allows her to die without any mess or fuss, and from her deathbed summons the girl David really loves and gives her blessing to the succession.

(LRB 11 September 2008)

Other Titles of Interest