Category Archives: British literature

The Essex Serpent: Exceptional – minus descriptions of fog that are overly damp.

So while I was reading Sarah Perry’s The Essex Serpent I was loving it: fog-filled Essex streets where 19th-century characters fall in love and chase after a mythical-perhaps-actual serpent haunting the people of the seaside town. Continue reading

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Filed under British literature, Fiction

The Only Story: Your Life (and Love) is Meaningless and You Will Die, Too.

Julian Barnes, Julian Barnes. I remember reading The History of the World in 101/2 Chapters in eleventh grade and thinking “WHAT. Writing can do this?! This is ah-mazing.” Ever since I’ve been a defender. A devotee. (see: The Noise of Time and A Sense of an Ending). And I started out with The Only Story thinking the same thing. Ah ha! More magic from Barnes.  Continue reading

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Everyone Brave is Forgiven: I have read a lot of books about the Blitz.

I don’t know why, but I have read a lot of books set during WWII and in England. True I like historical fiction, and true there are a lot of these books written (maybe someone in publishing can explain it to me? Likely because they sell. Because I’ll read them). I bet one of you knows why this particular period and place is so enthralling to this reader. Continue reading

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Filed under British literature, Fiction, Historical Fiction

The Hours: Reading Deja Vu

I think I might have read Michael Cunningham’s The Hours before. I know I’ve seen the movie. And I’ve read Mrs. Dalloway a few times. So maybe that’s it. Or maybe the scenes of Mrs. Brown, at home, baking a cake, taking care of her kid, and wishing she was reading just echo my current life too closely? Continue reading

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Filed under Book Club, British literature, Fiction, Prize Winner