I do not exactly remember why I decided to read Agnes Grey as a part of the Classics Club challenge. The only possible explanation is that I wanted to stick to something which might be an easy and light read. Then I always liked re-reading the Jane Austen type of novels and this seemed to suit that category, yet by an author I have not read before.
Reading a book is easier, but writing about it here is much more difficult these days. I try to force myself to write about the Classics because reading and writing about them is the very intend of the Classics Club challenge. Your challenge is not fulfiled until you actually write about the classics you have read. And that task seems to be much easier said than done.
Agnes Grey turned out to be a story just I thought it would be – an easy and light read and I didn’t have to exert myself to finish it and was not bored.
Agnes finding her family in a tough financial situation decides to take up the job of being a governess to children of well-to-do family. She sets out to do her task to the best of her ability, but her pupils doesn’t turn out to be so favorable to her instruction as she would have preferred and this leads to lots of hardships for her.
Anne Bronte’s writing is fluid, Agnes’s character is almost perfect, yet there was nothing notable in the whole reading experience. I cannot recall a single sentence that I wanted to highlight on my kindle. May be this is the fault I found with the book.
There are quite a few characters in the book, but none of them made much impression on me except Miss Murray. Otherwise Agnes Grey is a read and forget kind of story. Nevertheless I am happy that I read it.
Beautiful, flirtatious, and recently widowed, Lady Susan Vernon seeks an advantageous second marriage for herself, while attempting to push her daughter into a dismal match. A magnificently crafted novel of Regency manners and mores that will delight Austen enthusiasts with its wit and elegant expression.
I am not sure what I expected from Lady Susan when I picked it up for my Classics Club Reading; I just wanted to read one of the lesser known books by Jane Austen. Then Lady Susan turned out to be much different from everything that I have read by Austen.
Austen’s lead characters especially the female ones are usually very likeable characters whom females all around the world try to emulate in their own fashion. This could be the reason why Elizabeth Bennett is one of the most popular literary characters and Pride and Prejudice is still a favorite read.
Lady Susan on the other hand is an extreme flirt and tries to seek her advantage in each of her acquaintances. She doesn’t feel shame in making young and wealthy men (married or single) fall in her trap and plans to a marry one of them to lead a luxurious life. She has neglected her only daughter and has left her without much grooming as expected from her daughter. But Lady Susan is determined to marry her daughter off to a wealthy person thereby securing her future.
If I had not read Lady Susan, I wouldn’t have believed that such a character created by Jane Austen actually existed. Initially you start imagining that Lady Susan is a grossly misunderstood person until you realize that she is indeed a horrible character.But then I never felt tempted to abandon the book; it was rather amusing to see how the story unravels and how Lady Susan fares at the end.
A different flavor from Jane Austen indeed. It is just 80 pages and definitely worth your time.
So I have started to read this 1348 pages long book – A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth for the Classics Club Challenge.
A Suitable Boy is set in India during the post-Independence era and revolves around the family of Mrs Rupa Mehra. A suitable groom is required for Lata – the youngest daughter of Mrs Mehra.
I have read 100 pages of this huge book and I am truly delighted. There is something charming about stories from the post-Independence era. Remember Rushdie’s Midnight’s Children. (If you have not read it, do read it)
I am not keeping a target date to read this one. I will slowly read it with my morning/evening tea.There is not much option as this is too heavy to carry around. So A Suitable Boy is going to find a temporary place on my dining table, which means I expect a bit of curry stains, food particles, tea stains etc. But what good it will do if it remains on my book shelf in a good condition?
I bought this as a used book. If ever you plan to buy this book, see if you can find a lighter version. I really wish Amazon will publish a Kindle version of this one. I would go ahead and buy it unless it is exorbitantly priced.
So is there anyone who would like to read A Suitable Boy along with me ? If yes, do let me know through comments.
I heard about Italo Calvino when my husband mentioned his desire to read some of his works. I had no clue about this author, but promptly went and requested a copy in our justbooks library. Continue reading