Friday, February 18, 2011

Middlemarch and Melmoth

The sun has set on Middlemarch, and I will miss the time that I have spent with these wonderful characters. 

It came to a scandalous but fairly happy end.  Dorothea and Will finally avowed their love for each other and Dorothea renounced her wealth to be with the man she truly loved.  Dr Lydegate married Rosamond but it wasn’t the happy marriage he had hoped for as she had been an indulged child, was used to a certain standard of living and getting her own way.  Mary Garth married Fred Vincy and it seems out of all the characters in Middlemarch their marriage was the best suited and destined to work, being childhood sweethearts.

Mr Bulstrode had a secret to keep, but it spilled out in the form of Mr Raffles.  Its outcome had an adverse affect on Will Ladislaw and the Doctor but Dorothea stepped in and prevented a bigger scandal.   Really, Dorothea is the one who comes out looking pretty much like a saint although her halo did slip by marrying her mixed-blood artist of dubious heritage J

I found the biggest message in this novel was how important it is for someone to have something to do and a goal to reach especially for the betterment of people other than yourself; I don’t think that Eliot had much respect for the idle rich. 

Melmoth The Wanderer is a novel that I now wish I hadn’t started reading.  I’m in a quandary about how I feel about it – I’m enjoying it but I’m not.  I’m still on the Spaniard’s story and I guess really it’s about the Spanish Inquisitors and how hard it was at that time in Spain – especially being a monk who wants to renounce his vows.  Now he is in a tunnel under the garden of the convent with a man who murdered his own father, a fellow monk and a novice.  The Spaniard is hoping to be reunited with his brother on the ‘outside’ but he is unsure whether he should trust the man who has been sent to help him.  This is a story that he is relating to the descendant of the Melmoth who supposedly sold his soul to the devil.  It’s taken up about 30% of the book, and obviously has much religious meaning to it but that meaning is going right over my head!  I can only manage half an hour night with this one, it’s pretty intense.

I’ve started Panic by Katherine Howell, and compared to the two books above and my other current read The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle it’s a very light read indeed even if it is about a paramedic whose policeman husband is shot and her infant son abducted.  After reading Violent Exposure I didn’t think I could read another book in this genre - I think there is enough violence in this world without reading about it (yes I love reading horror but that’s a different kettle of fish).  But, I thought well it’s a week until our book club talk so I could fit it in, and I’m actually finding it hard to put down!  

1 comment:

  1. Hello Maxine! I came across your blog today as I was searching for my own blog on the internet. As it turns out, our blogs share a common name (between the lines). I perused the contents of this blog and decided to follow it because I find to be very insightful. I, also, am an avid reader and an aspiring writer. It would be great if you were to look at my blog and offer your critique of the poetry I have written in it! And perhaps provide some pointers on what I can do to improve as I writer; I would really respect your opinion. :-)