Friday, August 07, 2020

Friday, August 07, 2020 1:50 pm by Cristina in , , , , ,    No comments
Refinery 29 has 'The Women’s Prize For Fiction Shortlist Pick The Book That Shaped Them'.
Hilary Mantel
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
"Not an original choice but an honest one: Jane Eyre. I first read it aged 10, and Charlotte Brontë’s driven, passionate, first-person narrative was my earliest experience (on the page) of a woman’s voice demanding to be heard. For the first time, I found someone like myself in a book. I identified with Jane, so angry, so unchildlike and so troubled by ghosts. I read it again at 13 and realised the first version I’d picked up had been cleverly abridged, neatly excluding some of the more improbable events. I liked the abridged version better. It was good to recognise the book was not perfect. Unconsciously, and through many re-readings, I absorbed its lessons about writing; I learned about suspense, characterisation, dialogue. Even today I respond most strongly to the passages that originally fascinated me. I am riveted by the gruelling childhood sections, the midnight horrors of Thornfield Hall, and Jane’s flight over the moors, solitary and conscience-driven. I don’t care much about the romance. Instead of ‘Reader, I married him,’ I would have preferred ‘Reader, I got over him.’ But it is a capacious book; love and fear, desolation and redemption, the struggle to grow and thrive – these themes are for everyone, and for always." (Elizabeth Bennet)
Playbill recommends '21 Theatre Reads to Enjoy in Summer 2020', including
Victorians on Broadway: Literature, Adaptation, and the Modern American Musical
By Sharon Weltman
Looking at the phenomenon of popular Victorian era-set musicals like Sweeney Todd, The King and I, and Oliver!, Weltman examines these stage productions and their influences from literature by the likes of Charlotte Brontë, Charles Dickens, and Robert Louis Stevenson. Using her expertise in the field and interviews with Broadway luminaries such as Stephen Sondheim, Weltman paints an in-depth portrait of the debt the Great American Musical owes to the melodramatic stories of the 19th century. Available now from University of Virginia Press. (Dan Meyer)
BookRiot recommends '3 new thought-provoking horror novels', including
Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Mexican Gothic is, in many ways, a more honest version of classic gothic novels like Jane Eyre and Rebecca. The story begins when Noemí receives a letter from her newlywed cousin indicating she’s in mortal peril. This prompts Noemí to travel to the creepy manor her cousin lives in, where she too gets tangled in the mystery.
When a Gothic manor sits on a windswept moor, far from the place where the wealth was extracted to fund it, it’s tougher to see why it should be haunted. High Place, the house in Mexican Gothic, is in Mexico, a monument to a mining empire and geographically close to the mines themselves. The supernatural forces don’t have as far to travel. The connection becomes clearer. This book elegantly ties rotten families, marriage, childbearing, race, and capitalism together, without ever forgetting to be a wild, spooky, trope-y gothic ride. (Isabelle Popp)
In The Irish Times Donald Clarke discusses the Twilight/shades of Grey phenomenon and includes this wonderful explanation:
Grey is fanfiction for James’s fanfiction retelling of Twilight that also works as fanfiction for Meyer’s fanfiction for that author’s own work. Someone get Jorge Luis Borges in the house. [...]
Much perspective-shifting fiction is in the business of reclaiming the unfairly othered. No book does this more successfully than Jean Rhys’s Wide Sargasso Sea. A prequel rather than a retelling of Jane Eyre, the slim volume, first published in 1966, is a sympathetic treatment of the “mad woman in the attic” who did so much to spoil Jane’s wedding to Mr Rochester.
The Daily Mail asks bookish questions to novelist David Nicholls.
[What book] . . . left you cold?
[...] I love a great many 19th-century novels but — and I’m wary of admitting this because I know it’s much loved — I think Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights is a very eccentric book, and not in a good way.
Weirdly structured, relentlessly gloomy, grim and repetitive with truly horrible characters, its reputation as a great love story is a complete mystery to me. 
iNews features Lily Cole's new book about the climate crisis, Who Cares Wins, and how it came to be.
After four years researching and writing Who Cares Wins, Lily Cole decided last summer that she didn’t want to publish it. She sensed that the book, a call for bold action on climate change, was going to cause her a lot of trouble. “I really freaked out,” she says. “I suddenly thought, ‘What are you doing, Lily? You’ve spent all this energy and time and you’re probably going to get torn apart.’”
It is easy to understand why the 32-year-old had a wobble. People don’t necessarily want to be lectured on the environment by a model and actress who has no doubt expended a few air miles getting from one red carpet to another – even one with a double first from Cambridge University.
And then there was all that fuss when, in 2018, Cole was made creative partner for the Brontë Society, prompting author Nick Holland to resign. “What would Emily Brontë think if she found that the role of chief ‘artist’ and organiser in her celebratory year was a supermodel?” asked Holland. More embarrassing for him than her but enough, perhaps, to make you think twice about sticking your head above the parapet again.
Fortunately, Cole was on holiday at the time with her 12-year-old cousin. They were talking about the climate crisis. “She was like, ‘I just wish the politicians would do what’s right rather than worry about what people think of them.’ That really hit home,” says Cole. “I remembered that the gravity of the situation is more important than me worrying whether I’m going to get some criticism. So, I decided to just go ahead.” (Rupert Hawksley)
Medium describes quarantine art as 'The Gothic Heroine’s Second Act'.
The great Gothic novels of the 18th and 19th century catered to women as readers, and were frequently written by female authors like Ann Radcliffe and Charlotte Brontë. (Jane Eyre, which features a woman literally trapped in her own attic, is referenced in two separate songs on the Taylor Swift album.)  (Sady Doyle)
Buzzfeed includes quotes from both Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre on a list of '53 Love Quotes That Are So Swoonworthy It Hurts'. Bridlington Free Press recommends visiting Anne Brontë's grave as one of '10 things to do in Scarborough for free'. Khambay's Words, Words, Words posts about Jane Eyre.

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