Library of America presents a modern classic, the Pulitzer Prize–winning novel about one women's irrepressible spirit in the face of life's hardships.
In her breakthrough novel So Big, Edna Ferber follows the life of the unforgettable Selina Peake DeJong, a widowed farmer who through force of will transforms her hardscrabble property into a thriving business in a Dutch immigrant community outside of Chicago. Through her vivid portrait of the free-spirited Selina’s life and times, Ferber highlights the frictions between market and farm, city and country, expectations for women and men, American capitalism and subsistence living, the pursuit of money and the longing for beauty and art. When she finished writing her novel, Ferber confessed to her publisher, “Who would be interested in a novel about a middle-aged woman in a calico dress with wispy hair and bad teeth, grubbing on a little truck farm south of Chicago?” It turned out that millions of readers would; So Big became the best-selling novel of 1925, inspired three film adaptations (including a 1932 classic featuring Barbara Stanwyck in the lead role), and has remained in print ever since its publication.
What a wonderful novel. How could someone who wrote this write something as bad as Giant.