"Mrs Craddock" is a novel by William Somerset Maugham first published in 1902. Set in the final years of the 19th century, Mrs Craddock talks about a young and attractive woman of independent means who marries beneath her. On her 21st birthday, when she comes into her deceased father's money, Bertha Ley announces, to the dismay of her former guardian, that she is going to marry 27-year-old Edward Craddock, her steward. Herself a member of the landed gentry, Bertha has been raised to cultivate an "immoderate desire for knowledge" and to understand, and enjoy, European culture of both past and present ages. In particular, during long stays on the Continent, she has learned to appreciate Italy's tremendous cultural heritage. A "virtuous" girl, her views on womanhood are thoroughly traditional….
William Somerset Maugham (1874-1965) was a British playwright, novelist and short story writer. He was among the most popular writers of his era and reputedly the highest paid author during the 1930s.