Pages for You A Novel

Sylvia Brownrigg




Trade Paperback

272 Pages



Request Desk Copy Request Exam Copy

Winner of a 2002 Lambda Literary Award

In a steam-filled diner in a college town, Flannery Jansen catches sight of something more beautiful than she's ever seen: a graduate student, reading. The seventeen-year-old, new to everything around her—college, the East Coast, bodies of literature, and the sexual flurries of student life—is shocked by her desire to follow this wherever it will take her. When Flannery finds herself enrolled in a class with the remote, brilliant older woman, she is intimidated at first, but gradually becomes Anne Arden's student—Baudelaire, lipstick colors, or how to travel with a lover—and Flannery proves an eager pupil, until one day learns more about Anne than she ever wanted to know.


Praise for Pages for You

"With an admirable respect for the importance of youthful passion, Sylvia Brownrigg spins out this modern version of the age-old story of first love and sexual initiation."—Maria Russo, The New York Times Book Review

"Page by page, Brownrigg captures—in delicious and witty prose—the rapture and humiliation of first love . . . This exquisitely written, bittersweet Valentine of a novel is for any reader who has ever been in a romantic relationship and wants to remember and revel in all the foolish things we do for love."—Publishers Weekly

"The love affair is delightfully rendered and sharply written, tracing the arc of Flannery's discovery not only of erotic pleasures but of intellectual ardor and the wider horizons of adult life in general."—Bethany Schneider, Newsday

"Coming-of-age novels that focus on sexual initiation were once the exclusive territory of straight male writers, but, thankfully, women now write authentically, unashamedly, profoundly, and directly about their sensual feelings, including those for each other. Here, 17-year-old Californian Flannery is new to the East Coast and the Ivy League college she attends, and is drawn irresistibly to Anne, a teaching assistant 11 years her senior. A hauntingly beautiful love develops between the two in this tale either for young readers first discovering who they are and how they love, or for those remembering a rose-colored past. Brownrigg lingers delectably on the small, suggestive gesture, such as a throaty murmur of indecision . . . Some may read this with alarm at the inherently unequal power structure between the two women, seeing a minor-aged innocent exploited. But among those whose same-sex yearnings first attached themselves to teachers, some may sigh, not over past desires unfulfilled, but the fond recollections of what might have been."—Whitney Scott, Booklist

"A pitch-perfect evocation of a young woman journeying through a year's awakenings . . . The novel is not about the 'idea' of two women in love, though Brownrigg's unabashedly honest portrait of same-sex desire is certain to nourish gay and lesbian readers. But it is her invention of s26such a winning heroine as Flannery that will compel bookish types of all sexual orientations who recall the thrill and anguish of growing up to identify with her plights of passage. For this elegantly rendered, poignant novel is ultimately about awakenings both bright and rude, the intoxicating nature of desire, and the realization that love can devastate just as easily as it exalts."—The Village Voice

Reviews from Goodreads



Read an Excerpt

Pages For You


The leaves were confettied brightly over the sidewalk as if a parade had just passed, and Flannery did not think she had ever in her life seen such colors. They would...

Read the full excerpt


  • Sylvia Brownrigg

  • Sylvia Brownrigg is the author of the novel The Metaphysical Touch, and a collection of short stories, Ten Women Who Shook the World—both published by Picador. She lives in Berkeley, California.

  • Sylvia Brownrigg Copyright Jerry Bauer