"Jean Brodie, teacher at the Marcia Blaine Academy, incurs the disapproval of her colleagues by her unconventional teaching methods, her favouritism among her pupils, and also by her admiration for Mussolini and Italy. Scandals increase, chiefly involving the art teacher and the music teacher. One member of her group of favourites is killed while running off to fight for Franco. Her chief protegee, Sandy, denounces her as a murderer."
"Dame Muriel Spark (1918-2006) was a Scottish poet, essayist; superb short story writer turned brilliant novelist. During World War II, she worked for the Foreign Office in a secret department that produced black disinformation and propaganda, which she described as "detailed truth with believable lies."
Of partial Jewish descent with a Jewish father and Protestant mother, in 1954, Muriel converted to Roman Catholicism after editing the letters of Cardinal John Henry Newman. She felt that her new faith contributed to her gaining the confidence to become a novelist. She was supported in her decision by Graham Greene and Evelyn Waugh.
The Times in 2008 counted her as one of "The 50 greatest British writers since 1945." She became well known for polished, comic prose with dark tonalities that that touched upon serious subjects and explored human foibles.
Probably the author's best known and sixth novel is The Prime of Miss Jane Brodie (1961). In it, Jane Brodie, an overly enthusiastic spinster teacher, so enthuses over political-and-military commitment that some of her students become involved and die for their beliefs. The teacher Jane Brodie was modeled on Christina Kay, a teacher at Marcia Blaine School, which, in turn, was modeled on Spark's own James Gillespie's High School for Girls. The novel became a hit, long-running Broadway play starring Vanessa Redgrave and the 1969 film for which Maggie Smith won the Oscar for Best Actress.
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie was nominated as one of Time Magazine's "100 Best English Language Novels From 1923 To 2005." Cyril Connolly 260. The Modern Library's 200 Best Novels in English since 1950.
Muriel Spark's novels The Public Image (1968) and Loitering with Intent (1981) were both short-listed for The Booker Prize. Spark wrote more than 20 novels, several cellections of poetry, criticism, short stories, biographies, and even a few children's books."
The information on Muriel Spark above was sourced from description regarding a copy of 'The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie' "published in Philadelphia and New York: J. B. Lippincott Company, 1962. First American Edition.It was possibly from the dust jacket of the book or introduction.
https://www.biblio.com/the-prime-of-miss-jean-brodie-by-spark-muriel/work/57624 (accessed 21/3/2018)