My reading progress this year continues to be irritatingly slow, but I’ve been working loads as well as making major life changes, so there just wasn’t enough time. And as always in difficult times, I turned to the comfort of Edith Wharton’s brilliant, beautiful writing.
The Reckoning by Edith Wharton
This is a little Penguin Little Black Classic that includes two of Wharton’s short stories on the topic of marriage. Mrs Manstey’s View is a short but deeply moving glimpse into the life of a lonely widow that shines with vivid descriptions of New York as seen through the lady’s window. I honestly believe nobody has even described the flowering of a magnolia tree more beautifully than Wharton does in this story. The Reckoning is a moral tale – I would argue – about an unconventional marriage and the dangers of double standards. I found this one a bit uncharacteristic for Wharton, given that she always took a very liberal view on marriage – certainly for her time – and in this story almost seems to backtrack on her ideals. However, as always, she looks deep into the human heart and writes with captivating urgency about the emotional stages we go through when a relationship falls apart.
Pens: 3 out of 5
Happy World Book Day from Zanne and the Scooby!
I was going to tweet a photo of my favourite books, but then realised that most of them aren’t in my bookshelf because they’re circulating among my friends. So I’ll have to write this up instead…
These are just a few picks from the huge pile of wonderful books that have enriched my life over the years, because it’s good to look back and remember what a particular book has given you – especially if you have a habit of speeding through books the way I do. I’m sure there are plenty more that I can’t think of right now, but those can be for next year.
In no particular order – except for number one, which is very special.
This summer I went on a bit of an Edith Wharton binge after being stuck on a journey without a book and finding a collection of her complete works on Kindle. I think by now I’ve made my way through all the novels and most of the novellas, but I’ve still got thousands of pages of stories, poetry and non-fiction ahead of me. This is my favourite author after all. Which means I will read EVERYTHING by her. Eventually.
So here’s the 2014 addition to the Wharton bookshelf. Now somebody just needs to go and publish shiny editions of all her books. Folio Society, I’m looking at you.
Once again we’re months into the year and I’m just catching up on the Bookshelf! In my defence I’ll say I’ve had a very busy spring with lots of things happening that kept me away from both my books and the blog. But books have been read and are now in the process of being reviewed. This year’s Bookshelf, so far, has been a weird mix of classics and random books I picked up in bookshops or got as presents, some of which took me quite a bit off my planned reading path for the year. Here’s the first lot, with more on the way.