As I mentioned a few weeks ago, moving my blog from blogger to wordpress meant that I lost my Sunday Salon membership. I suppose I could have continued to do unofficial Sunday Salon posts, but I thought I might as well come up with something different – and I decided to stay with the quote from which I took my blog title (“She had read novels while other people perused the Sunday papers”). So, welcome to my first After the Sunday Papers post, in which I’ll look at some interesting news and links from the previous week and update you on my current reading plans.
Inspired by Iris’s post on readalongs yesterday, I’m considering taking part in Nymeth’s Middlemarch readalong. I haven’t had much luck with reading Middlemarch in the past – I attempted to read it a few years ago and gave up halfway through. I had a second attempt the following year and this time couldn’t even get past the first couple of chapters! I can’t understand why I’ve been finding it so difficult to read. The length isn’t a problem – I’ve read and enjoyed plenty of books of the same length or longer (my all-time favourite book is The Count of Monte Cristo and they don’t come much longer than that!) The fact that it was written in the 19th century is also not a problem – as most of you will know, I love Victorian classics. I don’t think I even have a problem with George Eliot herself – I’ve read Silas Marner and although I can’t remember much about it, I know I enjoyed it (and Middlemarch is considered to be better). So what is the problem? I don’t know, and that’s why I would like to try again.
Are there any books that you have repeatedly tried to read with no success?
- One book that I am finding a success (at least so far) is the one I’m currently reading, Daphne du Maurier’s My Cousin Rachel. I had my love for Daphne du Maurier reawakened when I read I’ll Never Be Young Again earlier this month, so couldn’t resist borrowing two more of her books from the library – this one and The Scapegoat, neither of which I had read before.
- Some good news for any of you who are parents: a new study by Nevada University has found that having even 20 books in the home can have an impact on your child’s education – and having more than 500 books can lead to a child staying in education for an average of three years longer than in households with less access to literature.
- Here’s another interesting link I found this week. John Mullan in The Guardian lists Ten of the Best Towers in Literature.
- Finally, if any Charles Dickens fans are reading this, here’s an article from the Daily Mail about his relationship with Ellen Ternan, the actress for whom he separated from his wife, Catherine. I found it interesting as this period of Dickens’ life, including the Staplehurst Rail Disaster, was covered in Drood, which I read in March. Apparently the BBC are making a new film about Dickens and Ellen, though there’s no news on when it will be shown.