In order to keep momentum with my reading goals for this year, I'm starting a new series on the blog called 'Properly Bound' (which itself is a line from Hemingway's A Moveable Feast) which will document each book I read and finish. As well as the snacks involved in the reading, because one must have snacks with a good book!
|The snacks: Earl Grey tea and a chocolate orange.|
For some reason I was convinced that I needed to read more Edith Wharton. I have vague memories of reading Ethan Frome when I was 13 or 14 and being horribly depressed about humanity for the next few days. I decided to be a big girl and dig into another novel of Ms. Wharton's, this time I picked The House of Mirth. I was also more inclined to give her another try since she was friends with Henry James, my idol. And also because Hannah read along with me, which meant we discussed the book over email, texts, and twitter.
I had a vague notion of how this book would end, though I still surprised myself my getting weepy when Lawrence finds Lily in her bedroom in the last chapter. *sob* I did figure out why Edith Wharton wasn't and will never be once of my favorite authors- too much description and details. Her dialogue is brilliant (the conversations between Lawrence and Lily? I underlined nearly every one) but there isn't enough. The paragraphs of details annoyed me. (I can just hear my lit profs. groaning right now. I'm sorry, okay?! But I live for a good conversation between intelligent- albeit fictional- people.) I just wanted Lawrence and Lily to talk for hours.
A few of my favorite lines from the book:
Mrs. Fisher paused and looked reflectively at the deep shimmer of sea between the cactus-flowers. "Sometimes," she added, "I think it's just flightiness-- and sometimes I think it's because, at heart, she despises the things she's trying for. And it's the difficulty of deciding that makes her such an interesting study."
"...I saw that I could never be happy with what had contented me before." --Lily
Lily had an odd sense of being behind the social tapestry, on the side where the threads were knotted and the loose ends hung.