Angela Brazil (1868-1947) was a prolific writer of school stories, mainly set in girls' boarding schools.

She was the daughter of a mill manager, Clarence, who like many upper and middle class fathers of the time was a stern and distant figure. Coincidentally, though her name was pronounced to rhyme with "Dazzle" rather than like the country, her mother, Angelica's, father owned a shipping line in Rio. Angelica was the main influence on the young Angela, awakening her interest in the arts.

Angela herself seems to have been a rather naughty schoolgirl, but enjoyed her schooldays and spoke of her natural empathy with adolescent girls. She went to art college, and may also have worked as a governess, as well as travelling extensively.

But her first love was writing - she had been a precocious child writer, but only took it up full time when she was in her 30s. Her first published works were plays, and she displayed an interest in folklore, but it is as a writer of girls' school stories that she is most remembered. She wrote over 50, including among the most famous "The Girls of St Cyprian's" , "The Head Girl at the Gables" and "The Luckiest Girl at the School". Though her stories include many popular school story tropes, they also praised and encouraged single-mindedness and independence. Unlike other school story writers such as Elinor M Brent-Dyer and Dorothea Fairlie Bruce, she never concentrated on just one school.


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