Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Gordon Brown sang with Kate Bush (not really)

The Guardian asked writer Esther Freud to list her 'top ten love stories' and among them is Jane Eyre:

2. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Jane Eyre was responsible for a misguided belief in the power of romance that complicated my teenage years. The idea that you could lean out of your window and whisper your lover's name, and that he might actually hear you, appealed to me too much.
Another Brontë novel and another top ten: Wuthering Heights is chosen by Tonic as one of ten literary 'one-hit wonders':
Emily Brontë: Using the male nom de plume, Ellis Bell, Brontë published Wuthering Heights in 1947. Following her death in '48, her sister, Jane Eyre author Charlotte, re-published the novel under Emily's proper name. (Jenna Gabrial Gallagher)
Apart from the fact that the novel is wrongly dated a whole century later, it must also be said that Charlotte Brontë never republished any of her sisters' works under their real names: in both her introduction to Wuthering Heights and her Biographical Notice she refers to them as Ellis and Acton Bell.

Also misleading is the following selling point made by The Irish World:
For accommodation there is a large selection of guest houses including the summer home where English writer and author of Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte once lived. (Diarmaid Williams)
We don't know which 'summer house' they are referring to, probably one associated with Arthur Bell Nicholls and/or his family - but 'lived' would seem too strong a word when all she would have done was stay for a few days at most. And if, as we fear, they actually mean the bed & breakfast Charlotte's Way, known as Hill House when Arthur Bell Nicholls lived there, well then Charlotte Brontë didn't ever set foot there, as Arthur only moved there after she died.

Coronation Street is still making references to Brontë Country, as seen on the Coronation Street Blog:
And finally this week, Norris and Mary go to Bronte Country in the motorhome with Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights singing them off the Street. Once they’re cosied up in their cottage on the moors . . . (Glenda Young)
Too bad they seem to be late for the Brontë Society Spring Walk which took place on April 18th. The Brontë Parsonage Blog has a post about it.

Minnesota Reads interviews author Catherine Lundoff.
What is one book you haven’t read but want to read before you die?
I actually have a list of every book that I’ve read since I was about ten years old so I can verify what I’ve already read, scary as that may seem. I’m still trying to get into Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys, which seems like a book that I might find fascinating if I could only begin. Well, that and maybe anything by Anthony Trollope, only because I keep being told that I’ll eventually like him if I keep trying. (Jodi Chromey)
And now for something really quite funny involving Heathcliff, Gordon Brown, a Gordon Brown lookalike, Kate Bush and Wuthering Heights. As the Daily Mail puts it:
Is it Wuthering Gordon?
Isn’t there something oddly familiar about the dark, handsome Heathcliff style figure, pictured here duetting with Kate Bush on an old episode of Terry Wogan’s BBC chatshow?
The YouTube clip from the Eighties has been watched more than 375,000 times, as the rumour spread yesterday that it was a young Gordon Brown.
It isn’t. He can’t sing. (Andrew Pierce) (Picture source)
For anyone interested here's the link to the YouTube clip in question. Oh, that it was actually Gordon Brown! Then the Heathcliffgate would make so much sense.

On the blogosphere, Love, Laughter, and a Touch of Insanity posts about Wuthering Heights.
Chaplum (in French) and SmallWorld write about Jane Eyre. Sunny Books shares a cute Jane Eyre moment and Fashion Low Down writes about 'Fashion Lessons From Childhood Fiction: Jane Eyre'.

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