A great re-imagining for the Wicked Witch of the West. I originally started reading this because I was a huge fan of the musical, but was forewarned tA great re-imagining for the Wicked Witch of the West. I originally started reading this because I was a huge fan of the musical, but was forewarned that the musical is extremely different from the book.
Overall, I really enjoyed it and I thought the characterization of Elphaba was imaginative. I will say that at points it was a bit slow or dense and a bit hard to appreciate the weirdness of it all. In my opinion, the best part is in the middle with Fiyero because you get to see Elphaba more or less as she really could be and less of the whole crazed loneliness towards the end, or her eccentric bizarre-ness in the beginning.
I would say that the written style isn't for everybody though and could be "too much" for some people. ...more
I read the 150th Anniversary version, which is the original 1855 version that was first printed. I wasn't aware of the fact that he'd added and reviseI read the 150th Anniversary version, which is the original 1855 version that was first printed. I wasn't aware of the fact that he'd added and revised the work until his death, so chances are I'm going to have to pick up another version at some point to see what the differences are.
As for the poetry itself, you can feel the Americanism in every verse. Of all the poems, Song of Myself was the one I found most interesting and I was fascinated by Whitman's use of parallels throughout all his poems. His is a very sensual type of poetry as he reflects upon American society, sexuality, and the nature of his own self. At its best, you can see very clearly the portrait of the man who wrote it as well as a reflection of America during the mid 1850s.
That being said its not the most lyrical poetry I've ever read; so people looking for that kind of fluid romanticism might be disappointed. However, I really liked the earthiness of Whitman's verses and I think it helped solidify what he was trying to say.
Unfortunately (Or fortunately?) I feel like I need to read through the book again because there were parts that I wasn't really sure how to interpret, or things I wanted to touch back upon to think about further.
In terms of recommendations, I feel like poetry is hit or miss with most people so it's like a big trial and error type thing. I'd definitely recommend him to fans of American transcendentalist/romantic period literature, or to people with an appreciation for earthly beauty. ...more
When I first read "Jane Eyre" in the sixth grade, I found it unbearably boring. The good bits with Mr. Rochester were frustrating (just run off with hWhen I first read "Jane Eyre" in the sixth grade, I found it unbearably boring. The good bits with Mr. Rochester were frustrating (just run off with him to France!), the secret of Thornfield incredibly cliche and its feminist undertones completely went over my head.
I usually bristle when I hear people say a person is "too young" to fully understand a classic work. But in this case, I now realize I was too young to understand many of the finer points in "Jane Eyre."
Hailed as one of the first feminist books, "Jane Eyre" addressed female independence at a time when women were inherently subservient to their male relatives and husbands. Written in the first person, the book chronicles three stages of Jane's life, her struggle to be master of her own destiny, and her personal battle to find a balance between passion and sense.
Bronte is also unafraid to add a dash of the supernatural, making "Jane Eyre" a true gothic romance. Also, as Jane is described as "plain, poor and obscure" and Mr. Rochester is a child-hating, surly, ugly (though the casting of Michael Fassbender in the recent movie might say otherwise) grouch, their relationship has a real sense of underlying grit that makes it more compelling than many other couples in the same genre. The ending is a bit...convenient...but is altogether wholly satisfying (see "The Eyre Affair").
All in all, I was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked this novel on a re-read. There's a lot of subtext that I'm sure I missed, and I look forward to reading this again sometime in the future. ...more
I was recommended to read Umberto Eco by a friend of mine, and I was not disappointed at all.
Eco's style is a bit dense, so I can imagine it would notI was recommended to read Umberto Eco by a friend of mine, and I was not disappointed at all.
Eco's style is a bit dense, so I can imagine it would not appeal to a lot of people. However, it's also extremely lyrical and beautiful. The book itself is littered with debates on life and death, love, the nature of God and time itself. This is probably the book's greatest strength, as Eco writes so beautifully about such lofty ideals. So for anyone who's a fan of debating or philosophy would probably enjoy this book.
I will say however, that the book itself requires a certain kind of mindset. So while I immediately loved the book and its premise, it still took me a decent amount of time to really feel as if I were absorbing it. There were times where I really wanted to read the book, but I felt way too overwhelmed at the time, or I wasn't really in the right mindset to really read it and appreciate it.
GGM is a master of language, and this book was so fluid and intoxicating it was hard for me to put it down and actually tackle the things that neededGGM is a master of language, and this book was so fluid and intoxicating it was hard for me to put it down and actually tackle the things that needed to be done in my personal life. The transitions between Urbino, Fermina and Florentino are seamless and beautifully written.
I think one of the best things about this book is that its not what it seems. On a superficial level you could say its a story about true love between Florentino Ariza and Fermina Daza, but I think that would be missing the entire point. There's a great deal of subtlety where Florentino's devotion to Fermina is done despite of the fact that he doesn't really know her, and while Fermina and Urbino's marriage looks to be perfect--there's a lot more conflict and heartache. Ultimately, I think this book is a wonderful depictions on the many types of love that exist (And many types of happiness), and that at the bottom of it all--love needs work from both parties to bloom.
The worst thing I think you could do is write this off as a typical true love story, because its not. In fact, I would venture to say that "true romantic love" isn't even explored until the last twenty or so pages of the book. ...more