Faces In The Water

Frame, Janet

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When Janet Frame's doctor suggested that she write about her traumatic experiences in mental institutions in order to free herself from them, the result was Faces in the Water, a powerful and poignant novel. Istina Mavet descends through increasingly desolate wards, with the threat of leucotomy ever present. As she observes her fellow patients, long dismissed by hospital staff, with humour and compassion, she reveals her original and questing mind.

This riveting novel became an international classic, translated into nine languages, and has also been used as a medical school text. 

'Janet Frame's luminous words are the more precious because they were snatched from the jaws of the disaster of her early life . . . and yet to read her is no more difficult than breathing' Hilary Mantel

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