If you liked "Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman" you might also want to try these book suggestions. Readers of "Portrait" recommend:
Miss Garnet’s Angel by Salley Vickers – "The whole way through Portrait book I wanted to head back to this novel, nothing to do with the story line but everything to do with the descriptions of Italy and in a way the mentions and thoughts of religion strangely."
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden – "Again nothing to do with the story line or premise of Delius’s book because it’s so unique but another incredible example of a man writing women flawlessly."
Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf - "This is the obvious comparison, I think, similarly taking place within one day (though not so short a timescale as Delius' novella). Her journey through London and this woman's through Rome are equally striking."
The Reader by Bernhard Schlink - "The only other German book about the war I’ve read is Bernard Schlink’s ‘The Reader’ in which there is a definite need to explain, excuse, and atone. ‘Portrait of the Mother as a Young Woman’ is just that – a portrait, and one with the hint of a challenge to the reader which seems like a good step further."