Fay Weldon delivers a brilliant novel that lays bare the secret hearts of women and men
When Joanna May’s husband, nuclear entrepreneur Carl, discovered that she was having an affair, he filed for divorced and had her lover killed. Now, sixty-year-old Joanna has no children and lives with her decades-younger gardener, a wannabe rock star. Carl, who also lives with a much younger partner, has never quite recovered from the affair—and Joanna is about to discover just how tightly he’s held on. Thirty years ago, when Joanna thought she was having an abortion, Carl and her gynecologist conducted a terrifying experiment. The result? Jane, Gina, Julie, and Alice; one person replicated four times. And all of them, Joanna included, are suffering at the hands of the men in their lives. The Cloning of Joanna May is a spellbinding novel about the elusive nature of identity, the consequences of playing God, and the ongoing struggle for power between women and men.
“A triumph of complex entertainment.” —The Times (London)
“Chemistry, not biochemistry, is what Fay Weldon’s style brings to mind: sodium fizzing its way across a watertank in the school laboratory—with occasional periods of smooth cruising before it crackles into energy again.” —New Statesman
“Another totally original novel by the best woman writer in Britain. Sharp, funny, very modern.” —Woman
“With characteristic antic energy, Weldon offers another penetrating look at our urges to sex and parenthood, love, power and revenge.” —Publishers Weekly “Weldon has a deft hand . . . The story moves along briskly.” —Library Journal
Novelist, playwright, and screenwriter Fay Weldon was born in England, brought up in New Zealand, and returned to the United Kingdom when she was fifteen. She studied economics and psychology at the University of St Andrews in Scotland. She worked briefly for the Foreign Office in London, then as a journalist, and then as an advertising copywriter. She later gave up her career in advertising, and began to write fulltime. Her first novel, The Fat Woman’s Joke, was published in 1967. She was chair of the judges for the Booker Prize for fiction in 1983, and received an honorary doctorate from the University of St Andrews in 1990. In 2001, she was named a Commander of the British Empire. Weldon’s work includes more than twenty novels, five collections of short stories, several children’s books, nonfiction books, magazine articles, and a number of plays written for television, radio, and the stage, including the pilot episode for the television series Upstairs Downstairs. She-Devil, the film adaption of her 1983 novel The Life and Loves of a She Devil, starred Meryl Streep in a Golden Globe–winning role.