Valerie Martin

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Valerie Martin
reading at the 2014 Gaithersburg Book Festival
reading at the 2014 Gaithersburg Book Festival
Born 1948
Genre novelist; short story writer.

Valerie Martin (born 1948, Missouri) is an American novelist and short story writer.

Her novel Property (2003) won the Orange Prize for Fiction. In 2012, The Observer named Property as one of "The 10 best historical novels".[1]


Although Martin was born in Missouri, she was raised and educated in New Orleans, Louisiana.[2] She graduated from the MFA Program for Poets & Writers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

She has also taught at Mount Holyoke College, Loyola University New Orleans, The University of New Orleans, The University of Alabama, and Sarah Lawrence College, among other institutions.

Her other fictional works include Set in Motion (1978), Alexandra (1979), A Recent Martyr (1987), The Consolation of Nature and Other Stories (1988), The Great Divorce (1993), Italian Fever (1999), The Unfinished Novel and Other Stories (2006), Trespass (2007), and The Confessions of Edward Day (2009), as well as Salvation: Scenes from the Life of St. Francis (2001), a biography of St. Francis of Assisi. Her most recent novel, The Ghost of the Mary Celeste, was published in 2014, and Sea Lovers: Selected Stories appeared in 2016.

Her 1990 novel, Mary Reilly, a retelling of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde from the point of view of a servant in the doctor's house, was released in 1996 as the Columbia TriStar Pictures film, Mary Reilly. It is directed by Stephen Frears and stars John Malkovich as Dr. Jekyll and Julia Roberts as Mary.

The short subject film Surface Calm (2001) is based on her short story of the same title from her first book, Love (1977).

With her niece, Lisa Martin, she wrote the children's book, Anton and Cecil.[3] She has one child, Adrienne, born in 1975.




  • Love: Short Stories (1976); Love: Short Stories. Lost Horse Press. 1 January 1999. ISBN 978-0-9668612-3-5. 
  • The Consolation of Nature, and Other Stories (1988)
  • The Unfinished Novel and Other Stories (2006)


  • Salvation: Scenes from the Life of St. Francis (2001)



  • World Fantasy Best Novel nominee (1991) : Mary Reilly
  • Nebula Best Novel nominee (1991) : Mary Reilly
  • Orange Broadband Prize for Fiction Best Novel winner (2003) : Property[4]


  1. ^ Skidelsky, William (13 May 2012). "The 10 best historical novels". The Observer. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved 13 May 2012. 
  2. ^ Biguenet, John. "AN INTERVIEW WITH VALERIE MARTIN". Brick Magazine. Archived from the original on 3 September 2014. Retrieved 2 September 2014. 
  3. ^ Smith, Sarah Harrison (October 11, 2013). "Catsaway". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 May 2014. 
  4. ^ "Valerie Martin". Retrieved 2018-03-14. 

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