**spoiler alert** In what world can the hero be some abusive jerk? What kind of love story can be written by a woman who was never in love, or, at lea**spoiler alert** In what world can the hero be some abusive jerk? What kind of love story can be written by a woman who was never in love, or, at least, never married? Can you even call this love--how the characters purposely destroy each other, for revenge, or because of their selfishness--?
Mr. Earnshaw, Hindley Earnshaw, Hareton Earnshaw, Catherine Earnshaw Linton, Catherine Linton Heathcliff Earnshaw, Heathcliff, Edgar Linton, Linton Heathcliff, Isabella Linton Heathcliff--I took one look at the family tree and was afraid. Not only are all of the characters related in some way or another, but they all share the same narcissistic and abusive qualities that readers have grown to know and love. Because obviously this needs to be required reading. Not that I'm bitter.
One redeeming value: Hareton. In spite of growing up in an absolutely horrible household, in spite of learning and believing that physical violence is acceptable (as observed by Hindley, Heathcliff's actions), and having to learn independence and defense in order to survive...in spite of the environment in which he grew up, he still has true love (be it infatuation at the first); there were sure signs of guilt, trust, and kindness, in addition to a desire to prove himself, to better himself.
Obviously, this book isn't solely romance; it discusses social class, nature and the supernatural, character, etc. Allow me to elaborate...Character: People suck. Supernatural: Ghosts live among us. Class: Everything sucks and then falls to shit.
And, raised over those brief summaries of points in the book, is the romance...again, everything sucks, people suck, life just sucks (unless you're dead, and you get to chill with your beloved. Wait! That's the Twilight saga! No wonder Bella loved this book...)
I will never deny that a book that has lasted this long, a classic, is valuable. I recognize its value.
When I started, I wasn't sure what to expect--but I didn't really expect this. Still, it was better than I had anticipated (being required reading aftWhen I started, I wasn't sure what to expect--but I didn't really expect this. Still, it was better than I had anticipated (being required reading after I had to choose between it and Death of a Salesman and is not a book I'd avoid....more
**spoiler alert** Read for English class; my teacher mentioned before we started about how the "n" word has been said to come up anywhere from 200 to**spoiler alert** Read for English class; my teacher mentioned before we started about how the "n" word has been said to come up anywhere from 200 to 400 times, and naturally, I wouldn't be able to rest easy if I didn't count them myself. For the record I counted 212.
It was nice to read something a little lighter, reading-level wise, as opposed to The Scarlet Letter and the other books I've been reading lately. The relationship between Jim and Huck was amazing, and the way the Huck's view of Jim changed was inspiring. I loved how Huck saw him as an equal, as a friend, perhaps even as a father or family figure by the end. Though Jim was the stereotypical negro fool of the time, I felt he was equal to all the white stereotypes depicted in the book.
I absolutely abhor the Duke and the king (Dauphin). And for that matter, Tom. I doubt now that I'll ever need to read Tom Sawyer; he just seemed so foolish. Of course I'd love to have that innocence once more, but running around the problems to dramatize it--especially when there really is no problem at all--irritates me to death. As a literary figure he's much different, however.
In this edition (Bantam Classic) on page 212, Huck talks/reflects on how you can't "pray a lie". This seemed pretty interesting to me. On page 243, Tom complains to Jim that he's now getting the idea of the duties of the prisoner, and why can't he stick to the main point? Perhaps this also reflects on Tom's Peter Pan complex, though it mostly makes me groan and slap my forehead in frustration.
Mark Twain's writing was easy to read, even with the dialects. I recently read A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court and love the prose in that as well, and have read several speeches, etc. by Twain. A wonderful writer, though I don't necessarily agree with all political and religious things, but that's obviously expected and not minded at all. Twain is fast becoming a favored author of mine.
So, would I recommend it? Yes to those who want to see what the fuss is about, why it's so widely known, etc. Yes to those who just want something light to read. Yes to those who want something pretty dense to read. I'm not sure I'd consider this a children's book, but I wouldn't ban it from them, though I'd recommend other books to children before this one. In all I'm glad I read it, and look forward to reading more by Twain (though not necessarily Tom Sawyer!)....more
**spoiler alert** A good book if you want something light and shallow, though a little full of it. Or something that rhymes with "it".
Even though I th**spoiler alert** A good book if you want something light and shallow, though a little full of it. Or something that rhymes with "it".
Even though I thought that Jo was obnoxious, I was entertained by the Jo/Laurie drama. Mainly because of Jo's awkwardness, but also because of and Laurie's broken heart. Twilight's got nothing on this!
In all seriousness, I don't regret reading this, though I'm not sure it'd be one I'd recommend to every one I meet in the street (*cough*unlike The Chosen*hem hem*). I did particularly enjoy the following passage (again, being honest)--it's all too true with infatuation:
"Laurie thought that the task of forgetting his love for Jo would absorb all his powers for years, but to his great surprise he discovered it grew easier every day. He refused to believe it at first, got angry with himself, and couldn't understand it, but these hears of our are curious and contrary things, and time and nature work their will in spite of us. Laurie's heart wouldn't ache; the wound persisted in healing with a rapidity that astonished him, and instead of trying to forget, he found himself trying to remember. He had not foreseen this turn of affairs, and was not prepared for it. He was disgusted with himself, surprised at his own fickleness, and full of a queer mixture of disappointment and relief that he could recover from such a tremendous blow so soon. He carefully stirred up the embers of his lost love, but they refused to burst into a blaze: there was only a comfortable glow that warmed and did him good without putting him into a fever, and he was reluctantly obliged to confess that the boyish passion was slowly subsiding into a more tranquil sentiment, very tender, a little sad and resentful still, but that was sure to pass away in time, leaving a brotherly affection which would last unbroken to the end."
-p. 409, Barnes & Noble Classics (paperback)
Now there's a touch of brutal reality: the boy got over it. Some people just turn into zombies for six months and call it quits....more
Not really my style. This book had little plot and was more an exploration of the minds of characters; lots of description with little dialogue or eveNot really my style. This book had little plot and was more an exploration of the minds of characters; lots of description with little dialogue or events. I'm not sure I'd ever re-read this....more
**spoiler alert** This is another book that took me a while to finish; the middle got slow, and so I put it away for almost a year. I was able to fini**spoiler alert** This is another book that took me a while to finish; the middle got slow, and so I put it away for almost a year. I was able to finish the last half in just a few day, however. It definitely picked up in part three.
The lectures that appeared throughout annoyed me just a little bit. Or maybe quite a lot. Also, all that sex and no one got unwillingly pregnant? Or was that under control? Or perhaps no one would be unwilling? Not to mention that the word "grok" got annoying after a while with its use. I wouldn't mind if it wasn't used so much.
Overall the book was okay. As always, if it takes me this long to read it--if I feel like I need to put it away for a while--that docks a few stars. The concept itself, along with the message and Micheal's church-school, were intriguing. I just still like the idea of One who will take me into His arms and comfort me, especially if I am a moron. Maybe Mike doesn't understand that, and that's okay too.
I would recommend it because it's been claimed to be the most popular science-fiction book, or something like that. Well-known? The "most famous", says the cover of my edition. Readers should probably like science-fiction, though....more
It took me so long to finish this book--not exactly a good sign. Mostly, a good book should captivate its reader absolutely, even if they don't undersIt took me so long to finish this book--not exactly a good sign. Mostly, a good book should captivate its reader absolutely, even if they don't understand the endless submarine jargon. I don't blame it entirely on the writing...Red October is definitely something you have to be in the mood for.
That being said, I did see the movie (several times) before I read the book. They are pretty similar, though for me, if I see the movie first I generally tend to enjoy it more...In this case I think maybe I'm just bias for Sean Connery, though parts of the movie seemed to flow better. I was a little annoyed at everything going right at the end, and the V. K. Konovalov coming in as the finish line came in sight. Obviously life happens and this book was adapted for the movies with drama in mind, so I really shouldn't complain.
In all I'm not sure I'd read Clancy again. The story was neat, intriguing, whatever...But all that jargon? It's hard for me to keep up when I have no desire to do anything with submarines and really just want to read about those Ramius and Ryan dudes.
So would I recommend it? Depends on the person.
Notes: I was amused by two things, mainly. First, Arbatov's quote on page 141--"It was their stupid Christmas season, and Americans were addicted to happy endings." An interesting statement. Second on page 387, the comment about the two defectors who "stayed awake watching cable television, already amazed at what they saw of life in the United States."
I don't know what the Cyrillic spelling of these are, but I did learn some submarine jargon in Russian-- zampolit: political officer Rodina: Motherland Nasha lutcha: Ours is better michman: officer starpom: executive officer michmanyy: warrant officers glavnyy sharshini: senior petty officers matros: seaman starshina: petty officer stukack: "cruel and bitter epithet or informer" Krazny Oktyabr: Red October
Of course, I can be perfectly wrong about all of these, so a comment is always appreciated....more