Yet another ILL request that is doubling as a guest lost in the stacks book. Glen Petrie's The Coming Out Party is another book which garnered a mention in Mary Cadogan's Women and Children First: Aspects of War and Literature. Although not considered by Cadogan to be a work of serious literature, my curiosity was piqued sufficiently to request the book via interlibrary loan.
For some reason I thought this was a book which had been written at the time of WWI, but as it turns out it was published in 1972 in Great Britain. I was a little disappointed when I discovered this, but as it is a short book I plan on giving it a go. I've not been able to find information about either the book or the author, so here's a bit from the jacket blurb. At the time of publication Petrie was a teacher in a North London school and wrote in his spare time. He had published a few other novels and a short story prior to this one.
As for The Coming Out Party:
"Susan and her brother Toby are the children of a family of prosperous Westmoreland landowners. At the outbreak of the Great War Susan has just finished school and when Toby enlists she becomes increasingly bored by the isolation imposed on her by her social position. Reluctant to join the fashionable VADs, she decides to follow one of the housemaids into a more strenuous and, she thinks, more real, form of war work. She moves to Crewe to work in the engine maintenance sheds. At first the squalor of the work conditions and the apparent cynicism of her fellow-workers appal her but she learns eventually to survive and to give as good as she gets. When in the last months of the war, with her women companions, loses her job she finds herself incapable of reconciling herself to the leisured world of her childhood and drifts into the hectic but brittle gaiety of the post-war West End."
So it sounds like it could be promising. One that has simply slid between the cracks and should be rescued? (Or not?). Has anyone read it? I'll give it a try in any case.