Rumer Godden

Active - 1947 - 1996  |   Born - Jan 1, 1908   |   Died - Nov 8, 1998   |   Genres - Drama, Romance

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Author of 21 novels, noted British writer Rumer Godden specialized in stories recounting her remarkable experiences in India. Many of her stories have been the basis of popular movies, such as Black Narcissus, and she also contributed to the film adaptation The River (1951). The daughter of a shipping line owner, Godden was born in England but was raised in India from the age of nine months. When she was 20, Godden moved to London, and after working as a children's dance teacher, she returned to India to open a dance school. There she married stockbroker Sinclair Foster. Pregnant, Godden moved back to England and published her first novel, Chinese Puzzle (1936). Though Godden lost her first baby, she and Foster had two daughters before they divorced in 1941. It was a bitter split; Foster left Godden alone and penniless in Calcutta. In an effort to support herself and her daughters, Godden ran a school, sold homemade herbal teas, and wrote novels. At one point, two of Godden's servants attempted to poison her and her children; the author later used the experience in her novel Kingfishers Catch Fire (1953). In 1945, Godden again returned to England. Fours years later, she married civil servant James Haynes Dixon and they remained happily married until his death in 1973.

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