Category Archives: Classics

Carmen and Other Stories

I’ve been waffling for a couple of days about what I want to say about this collection of short stories by 19th-century author Prosper Mérimée (and translated from the French by Nicholas Jotcham). When I think back on the stories, … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction, Short Stories/Essays | 2 Comments

The Picture of Dorian Gray

Oscar Wilde is an author I’ve been meaning to read for years. Of course, I know a lot about his work just because I’m culturally literate, but I’ve never actually read anything he’s written, with the exception of “The Ballad … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction, Speculative Fiction, Uncategorized | 20 Comments

The Man Who Loved Children

It’s no wonder that Sam Pollit, the titular man who loved children from Christina Stead’s 1940 novel, loves children so much. He’s a full-grown child himself most of the time—and a particularly immature one at that. He loves to be … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 9 Comments

Phineas Finn

It’s been far too long since we reviewed one of Anthony Trollope’s Palliser novels, something Teresa and I have decided to do together — but here we are at last with the second in the series, Phineas Finn. This is … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 5 Comments

Old Mortality

I’ve read a reasonable amount of 19th-century British literature, but somehow up until this point, I’ve never read anything by one of the most important and influential 19th-century British authors around: Walter Scott. I don’t know how I missed such … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction | 18 Comments

East of Eden

When Leslie, Christy, and I decided to read East of Eden together, I thought, “No big deal. Steinbeck’s books aren’t that long, and they read quickly. I’ll polish it off in a couple of days.” If you’ve seen this chunkster, you know … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction | 10 Comments

The Sagas of Icelanders

For several years now, I’ve adopted a practice of trying to read a major classic during the summer, when I (theoretically) have more time and brain-space for it. This year, I read The Sagas of Icelanders, the collection that Penguin … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Nonfiction | 13 Comments

The Castle of Crossed Destinies

A little while ago, I took part in the summer re-reading of John Crowley’s Little, Big. One of the things I said about it was that it is a story made of stories: children’s books, myths, fairy stories, Shakespeare, George … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 14 Comments

The Italian

 It’s easy to make fun of the heroines of Ann Radcliffe’s novels, with their tendency to faint at the slightest moment of stress. But, as I noted when I read The Romance of the Forest, this fainting does not necessarily mean weakness. … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 6 Comments

The Echoing Grove

When I finished Rosamond Lehmann’s The Echoing Grove, I set it aside with an “ugh, glad that’s over.” It was seriously hard going for a while. “An infinite boredom seemed to be invading him,” the narrator noted late in the … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 10 Comments