How scandalously shocking! From divorce and debauchery to alcoholism and adultery, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall was not only startling, but it was well ahead of its times in terms of Brontë’s revelations of the mistreatment of women, education of children and the inability to women to fend for themselves and their children regardless of position or circumstance.
The Tenant of Wildfell Hall counts for both The Classics Club (4/85) and Mount TBR Reading Challenge (14/24). And although I enjoyed this novel, it will be some time before I read Villette, The Professor, or Shirley – definitely need a break. It also doesn’t hurt that I somehow ended up with two books from the library which I’m very excited about—books about books are always awesome! (And by somehow I mean I put them on reserve and am very happy they arrived quickly.) However, let’s jump in to my musings on the novel.
I hope you enjoyed reading my three-part mini-series of postings about Anne Brontë. I know I enjoyed looking into her life and writings. You can read Part 1, Part 2 or Part 3 by clicking the links. Once you’ve read those take a moment to read this quite by May Sinclair, a biographer of the Brontë, from 1910 to fully understand get an idea of the impact of this novel.
“The slamming of Helen Huntingdon’s bedroom door against her husband reverberated through Victorian England…”
As you may have guessed from my fairly obvious title, I got a Kindle. I’m sure it had something to do with my blog post (July Update) including Tom’s cameo (among other things) or Tom’s rekindled, notice I didn’t say new, appreciation for books. He gave me a gift certificate to Amazon for 2/3 of the kindle because I didn’t want him to pay for all of it. It was a bit of a decision because I could have gotten 20-25 used books easily, but I really did want a Kindle so I bought it.
It arrived last Saturday and I immediately uploaded 25 books, three I paid for including The Finkler Question by Howard Jacobson, and the rest were pre-1923. I realized pretty quickly that the books are pretty expensive (compared to used) and I will purchase books, but I can’t wait until the public library starts loaning Kindle e-books.
Everything was going great until Monday morning on the way to work. Less than 48 hours of owning it I gave myself a mini-heart attack by dropping it in a parking lot. If you know me, this isn’t too surprising, but I was petrified and swore at myself for not just shelling out the money to purchase a cover when I got it. The back casing partially popped open and there is now a lovely scrape (smaller than a dime) on the back left corner, but thankfully it still worked/s. This scare necessitated my lovely blue case to the left. It doesn’t photograph very well and Amazon doesn’t show the color very well, but it’s a nice blue, maybe a bit lavender-ish depending on the light. I splurged and got the one with the light because after the mini-heart attack I needed something special.
I’ve had it for nearly a week and so far the pros definitely outweigh the cons. It responds significantly faster than my Sony Pocket e-Reader which isn’t that shocking considering this is the third generation Kindle and I have a first generation Sony. The formatting of the novels is great, but I wish rather than it automatically starting you on the first page with text, it would start you on the cover page. I absolutely LOVE the notes feature, although you can (and I did) go overboard as you’ll see in the quotes section of my next post.
The two biggest negatives are the side navigation buttons (personal preference) and the lack of page numbers. The navigation bothers me because for some reason I’m convinced the left should be backward and the right forward, but both sides have a large forward and a small backwards button. The lack of page numbers really bothers me, especially as I like to see how many pages to the next chapter. You can check the page numbers, but you have to pull up the menu screen and hope that the publisher included them. I’m sure I will get used to both the navigation and the page numbers as everything else works seamlessly.
The Warlock is the fifth book (plus a short story) in The Secrets of the Immortal Nicolas Flamel series, and what a series it is. I thought I reviewed at least two of the books earlier in the series, but I’m now assuming my logic was that I would want to re-read them prior to each new novel’s release (and I should have).
It took a few chapters before I remembered enough details from the previous four novels to figure out what was happening, but I quickly jumped back in to the historical characters alive and still meddling in the affairs of the world.
Although the series is about Nicholas Flamel, it actually centers around Sophie and Josh a set of legendary twins who in the first book are awakened a world of Immortals, like Niccolo Machiavelli, Billy the Kid, Virginia Dare, Shakespeare and Nicholas and Perenelle Flamel, Next Generation and the Gods and Goddesses (I think there is another name but I can’t remember them) of Danu Talis.
“No reflection was to be allowed now: not one glance was to be cast back; not even one forward. Not one thought was to be given either to the past or the future. The first was a page so heavenly sweet–so deadly sad–that to read one line of it would dissolve my courage and break down my energy. The last was an awful blank: something like the world when the deluge was gone by.”
I loved this novel. I didn’t think I would as so many people complain about the classics, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m glad I didn’t have to read Jane Eyre in High School, I probably would have completely misjudged (also known as misunderstood) and resisted the intelligence and beauty of the novel. Now that I’ve read it, it’s made me want to read the rest of the Brontë’s works as I thoroughly enjoyed Wuthering Heights and this novel.
I believe the quote above truly signifies the essence of this novel. It’s a coming of age proto-feminist novel written well before its time and I truly loved the elegance as well as the seemingly ostentatious fictional aspects of the novel. At times I almost felt like it should have been two separate novels and perhaps it was serialization and that’s why it lends itself so well to potentially multiple volumes, but I don’t know. Even though they were writing quite a few years after Jane Austen, I can’t help but compare the Brontë sisters with Jane Austen. I know the Brontë’s write in the Gothic style and Austen was more of a romantic fiction writer and perhaps it’s just they are all lumped into the British Classics, but I think there’s more to it.
So this is the most recent book in the Artemis Fowl series and I have to say it was a bit of a let down. Colfer does once again show off his mastery of random knowledge and creativity with the genius world of Artemis Fowl, but overall the book seemed rushed and somewhat tangential to the other novels. As I haven’t read the graphic novels or the additional material I’m not sure if that covers a lot of what I feel is missing, but it is still a bit of a random book.
The novel starts off with Artemis meeting Foaly (which yes I’ve misspelled in every other post), Holly, and Commander Vinyaya in a remote region of Greenland to show them his newest invention in an attempt to stave off the melting of the polar ice caps, the Ice Cube. Similarly based off Faerie technology and his own genius which produces micro mirrors and has the sun reflected back into the sky and they’re designed to look like snowflakes.
While all of this occurs we are simultaneously reading chapters about Turnball Root, former LEP Commander Julius Root’s brother, and his plans for escape from the maximum security prison and plan to reunite with his wife, a human. I don’t remember ever hearing about Turnball prior to this novel and I think that’s a bit of an oversight. I’m thinking and there may have been an extremely brief mention like in one sentence at one point, but either way this is an entire book revolving around this seemingly minor character. (Some spoilers for previous books ahead.)