Monday, February 23, 2015

I'm reading....

......more books at once at once than I usually do. There are books all over the house with bookmarks inserted at various points of progress and when I look for something to write a post about I come up empty handed......nothing is finished. So ....I'm reading -

The Brontes by Juliet Barker, although browsing is probably a better description, and discovering the pleasure of owning a book that needs time and concentration to appreciate. I love finding threads that link one author to another and here I read of Charlotte Bronte's visit in 1850 to Fox How, the home of the Arnolds. Having a ' highly idealized impression of the deceased Dr was an intense disappointment to meet his widow and daughters' who she found to be ' lacking that genuineness and simplicity one seemed to have a right to expect in the chosen life-companion of Dr Arnold..........neither she or her daughters were intellectual.'

Dear me! Charlotte - a touch of intellectual snobbery there.

Mary Arnold (Mrs Ward) speaks of the same occasion in an address given to the Bronte Society at Bradford in 1917. You can read this article here - it's very entertaining if inaccurate at times and is only one in a collection from various people written to celebrate the 1916 centenary of Charlotte's birth. Which means we have a bicentenary next year and I should have saved all this Bronte reading until then. 

I'm rereading Jane Eyre now - it's the choice of the Cornflower Book Group and as it has been on my Classics Club list for almost three years I thought this was a good opportunity to reacquaint myself with a book I read in my teens and  know I'll be seeing from a completely different perspective.

The King in the North by Max Adams - NF

Seventh-century Britain and the biography of King Oswald - considered the first great English monarch (634 - 42) he re-united and re-Christianised the Northeast; founded a monastery on Lindisfarne and forged a hybrid culture of Briton, Irish, Scot and Anglo-Saxon. Much of it is set in Northumbria around Bamburgh Castle with its glorious coastal views although nothing remains from Oswald's time except the gateway that bears his name. 

Bamburgh Castle
St Oswald's Gate


I'm really enjoying this and it's providing some 
excellent background for Beowulf but can only read it in small doses so can't see me finishing it before the end of the month.

Finally two light and relaxing books for bedtime..

The Second Deadly Sin by Asa Larsson - scandinavian crime.
One Pair of Feet by Monica Dickens - the second in the author's chronicles of her working life - this time she's doing her nursing training. Easy reading but not as funny as One Pair of Hands.

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