Great White Snark: Another year (or semester...) over.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Another year (or semester...) over.

YAY! I'm finished with this semester! It's been one of my favorites. I had mostly all awesome classes and I got to know some seriously awesome people, which is kind of a big deal for me. :D

I'm ready to enjoy my break, though. And with a break comes time for me to read what I want as opposed to what I have to read. So, here is my

Christmas Break Reading List.

Since I so enjoyed The Duchess, I decided to delve headfirst into the 18th century over my break, because it's crazy interesting, and 3 out of the 4 books on my list will never make it into my academic reading lists. SCORE!

First is The Sylph which was written BY Georgiana (aka: The Duchess). It's an epistolary novel that's based 100% on her own life: young girl marries older uninterested guy, gets swept up in high society, etc. Every character is based on someone from her life, so I'm interested to see if I can pick all of that out since reading her biography. Also, I'm curious to see what kind of a writer The Duchess was. She kept extensive journals and constantly wrote letters, so I'm curious to see how she does at fiction. SUCH a score.

Secondly, one of my personal idols, the poster child for 18th Century woman, and good friend/penpal of Georgiana, Marie Antoinette's definitive biography by Antonia Fraser. This is the book from which they made the movie. I've already started it and while it's a good bit drier than Amanda Foreman's The Duchess, it's still insanely interesting. Marie Antoinette's life has always been a subject of fascination with me. I've just never had time to get around to reading this book.

This book is about a Royal Courtesan (aka: mistress, aka: WHORE). Haven't started it, but I was so intrigued with how okay everyone was with mistresses and illegitimate children (not to mention the Duke and Duchess's infamous menage-a-trois) that I couldn't help but check this one out. Plus, there's nothing quite as delicious as carefully hidden wig, corset and petticoat scandal.

I had to read Evelina for my English Novel class last semester and hated it. Then I had to read Caleb Effing Williams and suddenly, every novel I've ever read and hated didn't seem so bad (except Heart of Darkness, which will always be a crummy book). Frances Burney was a contemporary and acquaintance of Georgiana's, and it's implied that the epistolary style was influential for The Sylph. Frankly, I just think this was a popular way to write novels, and really, I quite like epistolary stories. They're easier to read for some reason. Plus, it gives you the opportunity to really develop your characters and establish a voice for them. Anyway, Evelina is, at it's core, a book about riding in carriages with boys. It's actually not that bad, so I'm excited to give it a re-read and see if it's more palatable the second time around.

So that's what I'm reading. Yahoo!

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