Thursday, April 22, 2010


Book: Little Bird - Camilla Way

Frank looked down at his pint, struggled for a few moments to keep his face straight and lasted exactly four seconds. Jimmy gazed back at his friend, taking in his shiny eyes, the wide grin, the way he suddenly seemed taller and surer and better looking. 'Oh dear,' said Jimmy, shaking his head sorrowfully. 'Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear.'

Note: A fictional story about a young woman who was kidnapped at the age of two and raised by a mute in the forest. The author attempts to explore what it would be like to grow up without language, and then subsequently, to try and learn to speak and think in words in an unfamiliar world.

More intense than I anticipated, but a truly gripping read. The ideas surrounding language and development, as well as the psychology of identity and relationships, was absolutely fascinating in this book. One of those books you put down and still think about, and even discuss with others after the fact.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


Book: Persuasion - Jane Austen

So passed the first three weeks. Michaelmas came; and now Anne's heart must be in Kellynch again. A beloved home made over to others; all the precious rooms and furniture, groves, and prospects, beginning to own other eyes and other limbs! She could not think of much else on the 29th September; and she had this sympathetic touch in the evening, from Mary, who, on having occasion to note down the day of the month, exclaimed, 'Dear me! is not this the day the Crofts were to come to Kellynch? I am glad I did not think of it before. How low it makes me!'

Note: My favourite Jane Austen, and one of my favourite books. The whole waiting for love and the maturity of Anne Elliot appeals to me. Although after reading it again, I've only just noticed the ending and it's a bit odd. Oh well, the rest is pure romantic bliss. I swear in every Austen novel at least 3 couples get married (I was just about to list them but for those who haven't read the books yet, that wouldn't be cool).

Monday, April 5, 2010


Book: Pride & Prejudice - Jane Austen

Mrs Hurst sang with her sister, and while they were thus employed Elizabeth could not help observing as she turned over some music books that lay on the instrument, how frequently Mr Darcy's eyes were fixed on her. She hardly knew how to suppose that she could be an object of admiration to so great a man; and yet that he should look at her because he disliked her, was still more strange. She could only imagine however at last, that she drew his notice because there was something about her more wrong and reprehensible, according to his ideas of right, than in any other person present. The supposition did not pain her. She liked him too little to care for his approbation.

Note: A classic that you end up reading multiple times. However it's not my favourite Austen (that would be Persuasion). I find it too dissatisfying on Lizzie's side because her admiration of Darcy is so incredibly gradual, and then there's some of the things she says, that once she actually declares that she loves him, I, for some reason, feel a smidgen of disbelief. That and even the part of me that really wants to be swept away, etc. feels that it's too short a time for her love for Darcy to really sink in. Darcy however is fantastic. One of Austen's best constructed characters I think, but I probably only think so because I didn't have him as the narrator.

Friday, April 2, 2010


Book: David Copperfield - Charles Dickens

Long after it was dark I sat there, wondering whether anybody else would come. When this appeared improbable for that night, I undressed, and went to bed; and, there, I began to wonder fearfully what would become of me. Whether it was a criminal act that I had committed? Whether I should be taken into custody, and sent to prison? Whether I was at all in danger of being hanged?

Note: I had to read this for Victorian Literature, but it has become one of my favourite books! An incredibly satisfying read, but at 855 pages, it was never meant to be read quickly (as someone, I unfortunately forget who, said very judiciously). My lecturer described it as the greatest book of English Literature. How's that for a review? But I'm inclined to agree. Go read it - slowly - because it's awesome.