Saturday, November 15, 2014

It seems that the fate of the Ovendon Cross hotel in Halifax was not so black after all. It has beem reborn as Nursery:
The former Ovenden Cross hotel was left ravaged after a fire ripped through the premises in December 2012.
The building lay derelict for more than a year before a savvy nursery owner restored it to its former glory.
The Ovenden Private Day Nursery opened two weeks ago and has risen from the ashes of the former hotel. (...)
The former Ovenden Cross hotel was left ravaged after a fire ripped through the premises in December 2012.
The building lay derelict for more than a year before a savvy nursery owner restored it to its former glory.
The Ovenden Private Day Nursery opened two weeks ago and has risen from the ashes of the former hotel. (The Halifax Courier)
Yesterday's BBC Two Mastermind programme (S43E13) was in part Brontë-related:
John Humphrys invites four more contenders to answer questions in the black chair. The subjects are the sitcom Peep Show, the Battle of the Atlantic, the band Suede and the life and works of Charlotte Brontë.
The Folio Society new edition of Wuthering Heights with introduction by Patti Smith appears in The Washington Post:
Just as the weather turns brutal and wild, comes a gorgeous new edition of “Wuthering Heights,” the perfect classic for a howling winter’s night.
Emily Brontë’s only novel is the latest volume from the Folio Society, those folks who still remember that reading can involve tactile pleasures, too. This hefty book ($69.95) is bound in buckram with a subtle drawing of the moors wrapped around the front and back covers. Dropped throughout the text inside, several slightly nightmarish illustrations by Rovina Cai accentuate the story’s gothic tone.
(...) Surely, somewhere Catherine and Heathcliff are singing:
Forgive, the yearning burning
I believe it’s time, too real to feel
So touch me now, touch me now, touch me now
Because the night belongs to lovers.
(...) If only the Folio Society had encouraged Smith to write something more personal and intimate about how “Wuthering Heights” speaks to her. Instead, her introduction trudges along dutifully with all the passion of those opening pages in a Norton Anthology: “Emily, the fifth of six children, was born on July 30, 1818, in the village of Thornton, to Maria Branwell and Patrick Brontë, an Irish Anglican clergyman.” So far, so wiki.
But this is Patti Smith! Why not give her some room to reflect on Brontë’s evocative story?
Only near the end of this brief introduction do we really get to hear her distinctive voice and feel her sympathy for these characters. “You hold a volume hard-pressed to contain the words within it,” Smith writes. “Emily died on a bright December afternoon. She was but thirty. Where did she go when she tuned her eyes from the sun? Perhaps to roam unfettered in the wild and desolate Yorkshire hills. Let us not interfere with her. She stood her ground. Her untied mind did not create a neat package. In the writing of Wuthering Heights she did not give what she wanted; she gave what she had.”
That’s a reader who understands what Catherine feels when she proclaims, “I wish I were a girl again, half savage and hardy, and free!” (Ron Charles)
The Globe and Mail reviews Texts from Jane Eyre by Mallory Ortberg:
Ortberg’s “texts” feel true to the stories she draws from, but they’re also transposed into her voice, which is more and more recognizable. I asked her if she thought of herself as a channel for old characters or an inventor of new ones. “Ooh, I like that mental image, like I’m a 19th-century mystic at a Ouija board trying to channel Mr. Rochester,” she replied. “I do like to think of the original character and hone in on their most over-the-top, grandiose traits.” Does she feel any tension between the author’s imagination and her own? “No tension, no remorse,” she said. “I regret nothing.” (Alexandra Molotkow)
On the same newspaper a review of the YA novel Throwaway Girl by Kristine Scarrow:
Moved from her mother’s home into foster care at age nine, Andy Burton endures terrible abuse, neglect, and an unattended personal famine for love. Acts of kindness, though, shine blindingly bright, and there is a touch of Jane Eyre’s narrative somewhere in Andy’s, though without the wealthy relatives. It’s a story not told often enough: the forgotten child, left to the resource-poor system, but the heart of the book does not bleed. Andy is sentient, not a victim, but more an observer, and her narrative unravels gently, awaiting its readers. (Lauren Bride)
Natasha Gilmore is a new Publishers Weekly staffer who writes on PW:
The books I read as a child and teenager are the ones that left indelible impressions on me, though it took me a while to realize I wanted to dedicate myself to young people’s literature. After college, I moved to Boston and landed a job as a bookseller at Curious George Books and Toys in Harvard Square. Around this time, Twilight was hitting big, and I happened to be (embarrassingly, finally) reading Jane Eyre for the first time. I remember being struck by how Jane lives—her reactions, her tenacity, and also her capacity for love. I felt that Jane was not only most assuredly a YA heroine, but she also seemed to me a significantly better role model than Twilight’s Bella Swan. 
Charlotte Brontë is mentioned in an article on Dawn (Pakistan) which only will be understood by people well versed in internal Pakistan politics:
Life is so constructed that the event does not, cannot, will not match the expectation. — Charlotte Brontë
It is not Charlotte Brontë, with all her plaintive quotes, who is relevant to where we live. It looks more appropriate to resurrect George Orwell, the architect of polemical journalism and a novelist struggling against totalitarianism, to tell the grotesque saga that Peshawar and in fact the entire Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has turned out to be. Until that is done justice will not be seen to have been done. (Nasser Yousaf)
The New Republic celebrates Taylor Swift's Black Space music video:
For centuries, “crazy” women have been beholden not only to their husbands but also to their disorders, literally and figuratively “trapped” by systems they had no hand in creating. (See Jane Eyre, The Yellow Wallpaper,or just about any chapter from The Madwoman in the Attic.) Though they are sometimes sympathetic, they are thoroughly unenviable. (Becca Rothfeld)
The Guardian remembers that 'new writers' doesn't necessarily mean young:
Jean Rhys, who, after success as a young writer was widely believed to have died soon after the publication of Good Morning Midnight (1939), before returning with the internationally acclaimed Wide Sargasso Sea (1966). They’re all brilliant, so it’s impossible to say. (Joanna Walsh)
DesiBlitz interviews the Indian actress and writer Huma Qureshi:
Which authors influenced you growing up?
“As a teenager while growing up, I was obsessed by the classics – Jane Austen, Charlotte Brontë, Thomas Hardy. I was conditioned by the curriculum but also, bizarrely, Austen’s world made sense to me, in terms of propriety and conduct. (Aisha Farooq)
On Arab News we found another reference. But this one completely wrong as it seems to connect Emily Brontë's prose with melifluous and corny poetry. Mr Vohra, you have not read any Emily Brontë poetry (and if you have... well, then, it's even worse):
I am reading this magazine and there is this article about childhood memories and six people have written these ghastly, flowery pieces about sunsets and walks in the park and gamboling in rose gardens and treks to some flipping hill station and babbling brooks and the shade of old banyan trees and their first little pet called Rover and loving relatives and even more loving cousins and the one who has written about the most purple prose you can imagine (my childhood days were spun from gossamer thread, each skein a personal memory, precious and as special as the dew kissed tulips in the garden where the fountain tinkled its own symphony and we sat around the pond where goldfish played tag and recited poetry) has won first prize of a free air trip for two.
Ugh. Ugh again.
This Emily Brontë piffle was your childhood, what utter nonsense, pretentious rubbish. Poetry by the pond is your most vital memory of childhood, give me a break. How do magazine editors allow such drivel to pass as the real stuff. And then give awards for it. It is pretentious, contrived and corny. (Bikram Vohra)
Wyborcza Gazeta (Poland) interviews  Sally Gardner who remembers perfectly clear the book she read when she first realised that she could read in spite of her dyslexia:
 Co to była za książka?
"Wichrowe Wzgórza" Emily Brontë. Natychmiast pobiegłam do wychowawczyni się pochwalić. Uznała, że zmyślam. Ale przekazała tę informację dyrektorce, która wezwała mnie do gabinetu i wręczyła dziennik "The Times". "Słyszałam, że czytasz - powiedziała z przekąsem. - To pokaż nam jak". Dukałam, ale udało mi się złożyć kilka zdań do kupy. I wtedy dyrektorka powiedziała coś zaskakującego: "Zawsze wierzyłam, że będą z ciebie ludzie". (Agnieszka Jucewicz) (Translation)
Le Devoir (Quebec) reviews the comic book Vous êtes tous jaloux de mon jetpack by Tom Gauld:
On y parle de Shakespeare, de Pierre Bourdieu, des soeurs Brontë, des intellectuels et de leurs tours d’ivoire ou encore des interminables conflits entre grande littérature et science-fiction. Avec cette finesse, cette intelligence, cette densité cachée dans une apparente légèreté qui au final tissent surtout un art de l’effet, particulièrement bien maîtrisé. (Fabien Deglise) (Translation)
Chicago Magazine remembers that this the final week to see LifeLine Theatre's Jane Eyre in Chicago; La Voz de Galicia (Spain) recommends revisiting 'old' TV series like Jane Eyre;  the Brussels Brontë Blog reviews The Dark Quartet by Lynne Reid Banks, originally published in 1986 and now republished by Endevour Press. On the Parsonage Facebook we find that:
Visitors to the Museum this afternoon will have a rare opportunity to hear Emily's piano being played. Pianist Maya Irgalina from the Royal Northern College of Music will be informally 'practising' on the piano, playing Bronte music from our library.


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