I had never heard of Muriel Sparks when I saw it on the book list of a literature class I took a couple of years ago. I didn’t enjoy the course very much, half the books we were asked to read veered from boring to utter nonsense but this one was a brilliant exception.
The story takes place in Edinburgh in the 1930s. It revolves around Miss Brodie, a teacher in a primary school with very peculiar methods, and the Brodie set, the group of girls she decides to mentor. They will all grow to stand out from the rest of their classmates because of the teachings of Miss Brodie.
This little summary can’t even begin to explain this book. It needs to be read, you need to let Muriel Sparks lead you through the streets of Edinburgh, show you the view’s of Miss Brodie on love and fascism, understand the subtle limits of loyalty. When I first read The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie I thought it was strange, and it is on the surface, but if you really look into it you will realize it talks about thoughts and ideas that are the basis of our current way of thinking.
And if this doesn’t make you go and get a copy, the descriptions of Edinburgh should. I just reread it last summer and I can’t wait to book some tickets to Scotland.