**spoiler alert** When I first read the story, I thought if it had been written about a woman, self-sacrificing her whole life, putting others before...more**spoiler alert** When I first read the story, I thought if it had been written about a woman, self-sacrificing her whole life, putting others before herself it wouldn’t have been written. Women were supposed to be self-sacrificing. Literature is full of them. In fact, women, as main characters with a strong sense of self worth, were usually the main characters just because of that trait. Most women in literature were in “supporting roles.”
What we have here, I think, is a story about a very introverted young man with absolutely no self-esteem being mistreated and misunderstood his whole life. The thing that is novel about George is that he didn’t become a twisted, evil tutor and minister. He was actually a very nice person who was beloved by the countless young men he tutored and very much loved by Adelina and Mr. Granville.
At first, I was a little upset about this story. It seemed to me to have a horrible ending with poor George being not only left off Santa Claus’ list but God’s list as well. Then I started writing my thoughts and I realized that he probably was much happier than I thought.
(view spoiler)[ Of course, he still had to go and find another situation which, in his life, would probably have been tainted by Lady Fareway’s vituperation and made exceedingly difficult, but since Dickens didn’t go there, I prefer to believe that one of those young men he tutored would have found out about his situation and given him a nice little parish with about 100 sweet gentle people. He could live out his life there and Mr. & Mrs. Granville would bring all their little kiddies to visit regularly and his old students would call on him from time to time. (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>(less)
I'm reading the Sherlock Holmes series again and this, the very beginning, is the right place to start. This is one of the more complex mysteries taki...moreI'm reading the Sherlock Holmes series again and this, the very beginning, is the right place to start. This is one of the more complex mysteries taking place in both America and England. Holmes is called to a murder of a man with no visible signs of wounds or a struggle, but with a terrible expression on his face. There is, however, a copious amount of blood present and the killer has written the word, RACHE, in blood on the wall. This is also our introduction to Detectives Lestrad and Gregson.
Holmes, with the faithful Watson, make a number of observations and within a very short time is on the trail of the killer. When a second victim turns up, he is sure, but the reader has to follow the beginnings of the story in the Mormon culture in Salt Lake City, UT.
I was reading this book to use with my granddaughter in homeschool. Aside from being a delightful story, the vocabulary is very sophisticated which is...moreI was reading this book to use with my granddaughter in homeschool. Aside from being a delightful story, the vocabulary is very sophisticated which is great for school. I feel strongly that children should develop a very strong vocabulary so that they will be able to read complex works in high school and college. This book introduces a number of words in a context where the meaning can be inferred, building vocabulary naturally.
The story itself is fairly common: rich child, misfortune, hard times, eventual success, but there is something in the way the author writes that makes it very engaging. Most girls love the story of Sara Crewe, whose father in India, has sent his daughter to an English boarding school. She is extremely wealthy, but a very nice child with natural good manners. Eventually word comes that her father has died leaving her penniless. The director of the school is furious and turns her into a drudge. From then on the story is predictable and very satisfying, even from an adult perspective. I was as delighted to see Miss Minchin get her comeuppance as any child.(less)
This is one of the earlier Sherlock Holmes and has all the elements you would expect. There are the Baker Street Irregulars, good old Toby and the 7%...moreThis is one of the earlier Sherlock Holmes and has all the elements you would expect. There are the Baker Street Irregulars, good old Toby and the 7% solution, and one unusual element, a romance.
Miss Mary Morstan comes to Sherlock Holmes with a problem. Her father, an officer in India, disappeared on the day he reached London, and was never found. He had been a convict guard on the Andaman Islands. Six years later, on the 4th of May, 1882, Mary received a very large pearl and had received one every year since. There was never any message until the day she called on Holmes. She and two friends were to be outside the Lyceum Theater at precisely 7 o'clock.
Thus begins an adventure with murder, poisoned darts, a peg-legged man, tiny footprints in the dust of the attic, a steamboat race and numerous other twists and turns. I think this is one of Doyle's best.(less)