Sunday, January 26, 2014

The Telegraph & Argus talks about the Keighley & Worth Valley Railway-Brontë Parsonage Museum new plans:
We are now working much more closely with the Brontë Parsonage than we have ever done before, and as a result, they have agreed to make a financial contribution to the operation of the school holidays heritage bus service that links the Railway and Main Street, which I hope many of you will enjoy.
Their funding means we can extend the current weekday operation to Sundays in the summer, providing an appropriately vintage connection between the railway and the Parsonage. We will also be working with them to celebrate the connections between the Brontës and the railways, marking Charlotte’s birthday on April 21 and Emily’s on July 30 with special events.
This Brontë railway connection was also mentioned on the recent BBC Great British Railway Journeys episode, which covered Haworth, Oakworth and – more briefly – Keighley, as Michael Portillo travelled down the valley. (Matt Stroh)
Ruth Scurr reviews positively Samantha Ellis's How To Be a Heroine in The Telegraph:
Following a pilgrimage in her mid-thirties to see the ruined farmhouse that inspired Wuthering Heights, and a disagreement with her best friend as to whether Emily Brontë’s Cathy Earnshaw or Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre is the better role model, Ellis decided to reread the books that shaped her. Would she still admire her heroines, or had they led her astray?
The Asheville's Citizen-Times reviews the English translation of Jane, le Renard et Moi by Fanny Britt and Isabelle Arsenault:
The story is that of Hélène. Perhaps 11 years old, Hélène, for reasons unknown to the reader — or perhaps for no reason at all — is an outcast at school.
The other girls write mean things about Hélène on the bathroom walls. They make fun of her weight. They say she stinks. To cope, Hélène keeps her eyes downcast and stays quiet.
The only bright spot in her life is that she is reading “Jane Eyre” for the first time. She adores it.
The story is told from Hélène’s point of view. Occasionally, she interrupts the narrative about her life with references to what she has just read in “Jane Eyre.”
Hélène, wanting to believe there is something heroic about herself, searches for similarities between herself and Jane. She finds none — at first. A dreaded school camping trip proves to be pivotal for Hélène. She has a chance encounter with a fox, and she makes a friend.
The intensely dramatic, sometimes surreal illustrations are as integral to the story as the text. The illustrations were done in mixed media — pencil, color crayon, gouache, ink and watercolor.
During the parts of the story where Hélène describes her life at school, the illustrations are black, gray and white. The people looked pinched and there is a lot of dramatic, scratchy shading.
When Hélène describes what she is reading in “Jane Eyre,” the illustrations bloom with color. The people look more polished. Still, the differences are subtle, lending the overall work a sense of visual continuity.
Jane, the Fox and Me” was translated into English from the French “Jane, le Renard et Moi” by Christelle Morelli and Susan Ouriou. The writing is precise. Each conversation, thought and remark has bearing on the story. Hélène’s intense internal dilemma is captured with poignancy and authenticity.
In the end, “Jane, the Fox and Me” is about an ordinary little girl who is made the outcast of her peers. Gradually, with the passage of time, self-realization and development of a support network outside of school, Hélène reaches a happier place in her life.
Hélène is an Every-girl. Young readers, especially tweens, will empathize with Hélène’s plight. (Jennifer Prince)
Andrew Martin writes in The Telegraph about the death of humility as a virtue:
[Oscar] Wilde was challenging the inhibitions of society, and a modest character is, admittedly, sometimes an oppressed character. This is true of many of Dickens’s simpering women. Charlotte Brontë described Esther Summerson of Bleak House (“I have not by any means a quick understanding”) as “weak and twaddling”, and she is actually one of Dickens’s more interesting females. Enshrinement of humility also offers the temptation of simulating that quality, hence Uriah Heep: “ 'Be ’umble, Uriah,’ says father to me, 'and you’ll get on.’ ”
Also in The Telegraph we found this interview with BT Sport Action Woman of the Year, Rachel Atherton:
Epecifically the two elder brothers she lives with in a miasma of testosterone and bike oil. Both are competitors, Dan in enduro and Gee as a world champion downhiller himself. They build tracks in Snowdonia National Park. For fun, they race motorbikes. From some descriptions, it sounds like Wuthering Heights on wheels. (Sue Mott)
The Sunday Times (Sri Lanka) talks about Daphne du Maurier:
The story goes from strength to strength as she created the unknown character of Rebecca. It is a romantic story and actually quite similar in its Gothic character to Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre. (Christopher Ondaatje)
Many French news outlets comment on yesterday's episode of The Voice and a cover of  Kate Bush's Wuthering Heights:
Nous passons à une audition 100% à l'aveugle. Et on découvre une voix pas très identifiable sur "Wuthering Heights". Bon, on parie sur un homme... Si c'est vocalement intéressant, personne ne se retourne. Les coachs se déchirent : Jenifer pense que c'est une fille, Mika un garçon. "On l'a écouté(e) chanter et on n'a pas appuyé" s'étonne Florent. Face à un problème technique (qu'on ne mentionne pas à l'antenne bien sûr, the show must go on), Garou et Florent finissent par décrocher eux-mêmes le rideau pour découvrir Fabien, sosie physique de Julien Doré. (Translation)
The Sunday Times mentions the Brontë Sisters in connection with an article about the Lake District; Journal of a Bookworm reviews Jane Eyre; Emily Mai loves this Jane Eyre cover but we don't know what she will think about this one on Freakin' Sweet Book Covers; Jill's Daily Book Review posts about Agnes Grey; disputation talks about Terry Eagleton's Myths of Power.

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