What makes this novel is the writing. The lines. What one character says to the other. The description of places. All this creates an atmosphere of aWhat makes this novel is the writing. The lines. What one character says to the other. The description of places. All this creates an atmosphere of a frightening time and place.
I dare you to read this novel and not empathize with the characters. You feel you are in an insane asylum in the early 1900s on the English Yorkshire moors. Frightening. Creepy. The building is astonishingly beautiful, but what happens there is horrific. Who really are the crazy ones? The inmates? The guards? The doctor? The superintendent? You must judge. There is another frightening element; in 1911 when the book takes place, eugenics was widely accepted. It was supported by the likes of British Home Secretary Winston Churchill, by George Bernard Shaw, by Josiah Wedgewood, by Major Leonard Darwin. That's right, the son of the English naturalist Charles Darwin! Churchill was in support of a bill to protect future generations through forced sterilization of the "feeble-minded". The Mental Deficiency Act was passed in 1913, but after alteration. Forced sterilizations were not allowed yet registration and segregation of the mentally defective were.
The asylum did exist, but the name is changed in the novel. The Menston Asylum opened in 1888 as the West Riding Pauper Lunatic Asylum. The author dedicated the book to her great-great-great grandfather, an inmate there. Later it became known as the High Royds Hospital. Take a peek: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/High_Ro...
This is a gripping read, a frightening read because you come to understand how those who supported eugenics thought. It is frightening because you realize how ambiguous the definition of the insane is.
There are events in the novel that I wondered at. How could this have been allowed? Pure stupidity to allow a tug-of- war between attendants and patients. Isn't that going to lead to trouble? Isn't it insane to completely separate the women and the men and then one day a week allowing them to dance? Again you question, who really are the insane?!
The audiobook narration by Daniel Weyman was superb. Without a doubt five stars for the narration. You easily distinguish between the women and men. The Irish dialect is perfect You perceive when sanity becomes insanity. Perfect speed. ...more
Review to come. I have to figure out why I cannot give this more than three stars. I know I liked it, but how could it have been improved? What was miReview to come. I have to figure out why I cannot give this more than three stars. I know I liked it, but how could it have been improved? What was missing? Please remember that three stars is nevertheless a book I can recommend to others.
I didn't know much about Louisa, the wife of John Quincy Adams, the sixth President of the US. He was the son of the more famed John Adams, the second US President. What I knew I had learned from John Adams by the fantastic author David McCullough. It is very hard to succeed as well as McCullough; having read one book on a related topic you tend to make comparisons between the two. John Quincy, the son, was also a diplomat, a Senator and a member of the House of Representatives. As a diplomat he played an important role in negotiating the Treaty of Ghent which ended the War of 1812. He was stationed in Europe at the end of the Napoleonic Wars. As President he couldn't do very much, having a Senate that opposed him. As the Massachusetts member of the House of Representatives, for the last seventeen years of his life, he is known for his opposition to slavery on moral grounds. Equality was to be afforded all Americans. He feared that the issue could lead to dissolution of the Union and bloodshed. There is the husband in a nutshell.
This book focuses on Louisa, and while it touches upon historical events, they are the backdrop rather than the central focus of the book. I would have appreciated more about the War of 1812, more about Adams' rival Andrew Jackson. He became the seventh President. In relation to Jackson, the Battle of New Orleans is mentioned and then dropped. I am not an historian; I wish more facts had been filled in. Interesting side issues are touched upon, such as the electoral process for the Presidency, but that is dropped soon too. Only as Louisa becomes more interested in politics does the book focus on historical events. Even if this is a book about Louisa, it is possible to also deliver on both husband and wife and on both the personal and historical events. Often different interpretations of the known facts were presented. This I liked, but at the same time I wanted the author to more often conclude with a summary of that presented, to help me interpret these facts.
So the central focus is Louisa. She is a difficult person to study. One minute she is strong and then she is weak. One minute I felt sorry for her and the next I felt like wringing her neck. You can take just about any of her statements and find contradictions. How do you draw an accurate picture of her? She did an awful lot of griping in the beginning, on her travels and when she was first married. This was one point where I wanted to wring her neck. I thought, "Appreciate what is given to you. How many women were able to travel like this?!" I know the travels were difficult. We are told she is sick often. We are also told that she says she is sick sometimes when she is not, to get out of something she doesn't want to do. Having been told that I was often left wondering if she was really sick or not! Much is drawn from Louisa's correspondence. You can say whatever you want in a letter; it does not have to be true! Do you understand why I sometimes was left wondering how to interpret the facts?
By the book's end I feel I came to know Louisa, not by what she said, but more by watching her actions over her entire life. She was a social creature. She certainly seems manic depressive. One minute up, next minute down. She had a hard life, (view spoiler)[the loss of three of her four children and the numerous miscarriages (hide spoiler)], but she also was also given many fabulous opportunities for enriching her life! She was contradictory in most every aspect of her being. She loved her husband and hated him. She was self-reliant and then collapsed in a heap. She had feminist views....but certainly not always. Many statements in the book can be debated and discussed. This makes for an interesting book.
The audiobook narration by Kirsten Potter was good. I grew into liking it. In the beginning I disliked how her intonation reflected her view of what was stated. You could hear what she thought of the events. Her views are those of a modern woman. I prefer a more neutral reading, and I don't want to view historical events through a contemporary lens. Yet, it wasn't hard to follow and the words were clear. It was easy to differentiate between quotes and the author's own lines. A bit too fast sometimes. The last hour of the audiobook could be notes. I recognized that sentences throughout the entire book were repeated. Nothing new was added. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
How does one write a review for this book without saying too much?
The ending is important, and that ending is not going to please everyone, but I likHow does one write a review for this book without saying too much?
The ending is important, and that ending is not going to please everyone, but I liked it. It is realistic. It is why I considered giving the book 3 rather than 2 stars. The first half of the book dragged. It is boring. It lacks the humor I so love in Trollope's books. There is very little humor in any of this book. I smiled at only a line or two. For these reasons 2 rather than 3 stars.
I insist that what happens here IS true to life. This is a story about money and marriage and the social norms of the Victorian era. It is about the restriction that era placed on people. It is also about love, how it messes with your head. It is about love between father and daughter, love between mother and daughter and in a couple. These love attachments are not the same even if they are equally strong. I felt that each character remained true to him or herself. I understood the father. I understood the mother and the daughter. Each one is different and they are not caricatures. There are people like George! If you need to love a book's characters, I don't recommend this book. I do recommend it to those of you who are intrigued by the fallibility of human behavior. Even when you try your best all can go downhill. That is how life is. Good intentions do not prevent disaster.
All the other audiobooks I have read by Trollope have been narrated by Timothy West. He was excellent. It was great to test one narrated by another, to see if this should influence my appreciation. I didn't see as much humor, but I don't think it is there in the lines. I did like the narration by Tony Britton and know now I can choose him for Trollope’s books too.
If you are looking for a fairytale, don’t read this book. If you have never read Trollope before, don’t read this book. His talents are only hinted at. I liked the book by its end, but struggled through at least the first half. I cannot rate a book solely by how I feel at the end. ...more
This book offers a good recap of what is known about the Brontë family - the three authors Charlotte, Emily and Anne, the two oldest sisters Maria andThis book offers a good recap of what is known about the Brontë family - the three authors Charlotte, Emily and Anne, the two oldest sisters Maria and Elizabeth that died before their teens, their brother Branwell and the father Patrick. The focus is on Charlotte. She lived the longest of the six children. She died at the age of 38 in 1855! Their mother, Maria, died when Charlotte, the third oldest child, was five years old. Patrick was the perpetual curate of the parsonage in Haworth, West Yorkshire, where the family moved after living in Thornton, West Riding of Yorkshire. England of course.
There is a heavy reliance upon The Life of Charlotte Brontë by Elizabeth Gaskell which was published in 1857, soon after her death. We hear so much of what Gaskell thought; I wondered repeatedly if it would have been better to simply read that book instead! Her book emphasizes the private details of her life. In Harman’s book attention is also paid to the letters from Charlotte to Constantin Héger, the husband of the headmistress at the boarding school in Brussels where Charlotte and Emily had been teaching English and music respectively in exchange for board and tuition. Charlotte was there from 1842-1844. She was infatuated with Héger. The Brussels sojourn is clearly the inspiration for her last novel, Villette, and The Professor, published in 1857 after her death.
I would have appreciated a more questioning analysis of the accepted facts. Repeatedly I felt that what was stated was subjective. Clearly Gaskell’s views were not unbiased. She omitted details of Charlotte’s love for Héger! When Gaskell first came to the parsonage she saw it with unappreciative eyes, desolate moors with the wind “piping and wailing”. I have vacationed in Yorkshire. I liked the moors and enjoyed walking there. Gaskell’s perception has colored how we see the Brontës’ existence. It is said by Gaskell that Patrick forbid the eating of meat, but there are other sources that refer to meat being eaten and cooked. The author does not point out the discrepancy between these contradictory statements found in different parts of the book.
The deaths and illnesses, their father’s egotism and favoring of the son, the unrequited love, the girls’ struggle to support themselves and their brother’s dissolute lifestyle draw a dark picture. The girls’ aspirations to become writers are all the more admirable, topped off by the era’s prejudice against women writers! All three published under male pen names to hide their true identity. I knew that Charlotte did finally (view spoiler)[marry (hide spoiler)], but this book made her (view spoiler)[happiness (hide spoiler)] mine. I was deeply moved.
After completing this book I still cannot grasp the close relationship between the siblings. How did it come to be they turned toward each other to the extent that they did? My guess is that even if their mother died when they were very young, she played a role. I wish the author had provided more information about her significance. Neither do I understand how Charlotte could be such a loving daughter? Their mother’s sister, Elizabeth Branwell, came to care for the widower and children at the parsonage after the death of their mother. Too little is said about her and her relationship with the children.
I do not recommend listening to the audiobook narrated by Corrie James. It is difficult to distinguish between what is a quote and what are the views of the author. Sometimes the text says that this is a letter from X to Y, or this is what so-an-so wrote, and then there is no problem understanding. However other times you hear the author’s view followed immediately by a quote that exemplifies that view, but you do not see the quote punctuation. Then the text switches back to the author’s lines. In that the author uses an old fashioned wordy way of speaking it is extremely difficult to keep straight who is saying what. Take my word for it, you get confused. The intonation is very British, old-fashioned and all too often dreary and melancholic. At particularly dire moments the words are slurred together. Numerous times I had to backtrack to listen several times. Did she say 90 of 19?! Did she say Brunty or Prunty or what? I prefer clear, easily deciphered words rather than dramatized lines dripping sentiment. The poor narration does not influence my rating though.
I am glad I read this; it is a satisfactory review of what is already well known. It is just that I wanted a bit more. ["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
I totally disliked this book. I have read Woolf previously and enjoyed several of her volumes. I cannot imagine that the few lines of stream of consciI totally disliked this book. I have read Woolf previously and enjoyed several of her volumes. I cannot imagine that the few lines of stream of consciousness writing could be a stumbling block to readers. The problem here is instead that this is a polemic. A polemic is by definition:
-an aggressive attack or refutation of the opinions or principles of another -the art or practice of disputation by controversy
Aggressive is the word to focus upon.
The substance of this novel is based on lectures given by Virginia Woolf at Newnham College and Girton College, two women's colleges at Cambridge University in October 1928. A fictional narrator is woven around the “extended essay” based on the named lectures. These lectures are about women both as authors and as characters in fiction. A second fictional character is added by Woolf - Judith, Shakespeare's sister.
The fictional characters and narrative allow the author to use her distinctive "stream of consciousness" technique but it is used sparingly and not hard to follow.
What I objected to was the aggressive, angry and negative tone of the lectures, the central and most important focus of the book, i.e. the non-fiction part of the book. Over and over again with example after example Woolf illustrates how historically women have been dominated and repressed by men. She rants that society has made it impossible for women to promote themselves. To succeed they must have both money and "a room of their own" where they can write undisturbed. Rather than ranting about the past I would have preferred that Woolf focused not upon the negative but those few women who have succeeded. Give positive examples for other women to follow rather than focus on past failures. There have been female authors who wrote and were acclaimed as early as in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries. Aphra Benn (1640-1689), Lady Mary Wortley Montagu (1689-1762), Mary Masters (1706?-1759?), Fanny Berney (1752-1840) and Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797) to name but a few! There are female artists too. I say encourage rather than discourage.
There are a few descriptive lines in the fictional sections that I enjoyed. I could scarcely appreciate them due to the anger boiling up in me.
The audiobook I listened to is narrated by Juliet Stevenson. She is utterly magnificent. It was not the narration that caused me trouble. The audiobook has no introduction but at the end there are fragments of poems. These poems are called short stories, which they really were not. Merely very short fragments of something…… They did not speak to me. ...more
I have just begun. I have only completed chapter 10:
EVERYBODY must try a Trollope. He does not deliver the normal VictorianI have just begun. I have only completed chapter 10:
EVERYBODY must try a Trollope. He does not deliver the normal Victorian brew. I am NOT a reader of the Victorian genre. Trollope's are something different; Trollope's are special.
I am sitting here thinking of all those like me who before trying Trollope have no idea that such exists.
IF you have not read Trollope - please do me a favor and try one.
Delightful humor. You read them for their humor. Sweet humor. Subtle, tongue-in-cheek humor.
I am listening to an audiobook narrated by Timothy West. IF you do audiobooks, please let me request one more favor. LISTEN to this narrated by West. I am not 100% sure if it is his narration or the lines that bring out the humor so wonderfully.
I definitely recommend this classic. It doesn't read like a classic at all. Trollope’s books are the only "Victorian novels" that really appeal to me. It is not stuffy. It is filled with fantastic lines - humorous and full of insight into human behavior.
Trollope understands women. His female characters are true to life. There are a number here, and they are not all the same; each one is a very different individual. Each one is true to their own character. They do not become caricatures. You listen to their words. You watch what they do and you nod and empathize with their struggles. Each must decide in their own way how they wish to lead their life. Trollope's women are intelligent, thinking creatures. Many politically active, at least to the extent they can be politically active. Money and love and marriage and the choices open to women of this era - Britain 1860s - this is the feminine side of the book's central theme.
And the men, they are each different too. You may think that in portraying different kinds of people they turn into stereotypes, but they don't because you watch them being torn between choices. The central character is Phineas Finn. He has no money but he wants above all to be in Parliament. Only parliamentarians in the cabinet were paid. He was lucky. He worked hard and read to see what happens. Here the central question is to what extent you follow the dictates of your party. What if your own principles conflict with that prescribed by your party?
The politics is not heavy, although I was a bit confused at the start. The issues debated are all concerned with voting rights. At this time only those with property could vote. The ballot, enfranchisement, configuration of voting districts and Irish tenant rights are debated. Phineas Finn is Irish. The political battle is drawn from history. See the Second Reform Act of 1867: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reform_...
Why doesn’t this become dry and boring? Two reasons. First of all the humor. Secondly because Trollope through his characters and through the plot interweaves philosophical questions. Party versus personal convictions, love versus money, play versus work, privacy versus prominence. Questions all of us confront. Questions for which there is no right or wrong, but which each individual must come to terms with - as individuals and as couples. How do you choose? The book looks at different characters and different choices, with humor and without rancor.
ETA: Cecily read my review and didn't understand why I only gave it three stars. I think her question is absolutely legitimate; I don't explain that vETA: Cecily read my review and didn't understand why I only gave it three stars. I think her question is absolutely legitimate; I don't explain that very well. I had trouble understanding one of the prime protagonists - Alice. Please see messages 5, 6, 7 and 8 below. I explain in more detail there. Also I think the author could have done more in describing Baden, Germany, and both Basel and Lucerne, Switzerland.
I definitely enjoyed this book and I am utterly amazed. My track record with Victorian novels is poor; they always fail me. This is the first one that I really did enjoy. Why?
The characters are not caricatures; they are multi-dimensional. These are real people that you will recognize still today. This is a book of character studies. BUT, you don't read it for plot; if you read it for plot the story is way too simple. Who will marry whom?
What I really, really enjoyed were the lines. Funny, funny humorous lines. Satirical, humor that is not nasty. Humor that keeps you on your toes because if you don't pay attention you will miss the joke. Subtle humor. The whole point of this novel has to be its humor, at least that is how it was for me. It has a message. It is all about women and their place in society. It is also about conjugal relationships. I was amazed at how modern that message could be. It was written in serial format in 1864 and 1865. Don't think it is difficult to read because it was written so long ago; it is not in the least. It is not just a satire on English aristocracy and social norms; it is also about different kinds of people. There is the flamboyant, the cautious, the rascal, the steadfast and yet at the same time they are nuanced so you understand why they behave as they do. What I think is special is that characters, even those very different from myself, I came to understand. It felt like, for them to be true to themselves, they had to behave as they did.
So what did the book teach me? Well, I think I understand better, more intimately what it may have been like to live back then in a society so socially restrictive. You look at different people, with different personalities and of different social classes and you watch what they do and say. And you smile at every other sentence. So very much is said through humor. I liked that.
The audiobook narration by Timothy West was totally fantastic. He just expressed himself so perfectly, capturing the identity of each character. He knows when to pause to give the lines the proper effect. This is one of those times when the narrator is the icing on a delicious cake.
This is the first Victorian novel that I really did enjoy.
After about 1/3:
What a huge surprise. I am totally loving this.
This book will bore you if you read it to find out what happens, if you read it for plot! If you read it to find out who will marry whom.
I am reading it for the hours spent with it. I am reading it for the lines. I am reading it for the care that is taken in drawing the characters. I am reading it for the dialog and for watching each step the characters make in their indecision. Time has to be taken to accurately describe each step along the way. It is the path that is important, more than where you end up.
The characters are complicated. They do one thing one day and the opposite the next; they are just like real people. Their ambivalence and indecision is what makes them genuine. This is a book for readers who enjoy character studies. Real, complicated people, not caricatures.
It is a book for those who enjoy subtle humor. Satire definitely, but still sweet.
I thought I knew how this would end; I no longer do. ...more
Pretty huh? For this reason alone, I thought I would read the book. It is non-fiction.
Why in the world did I have trouble with this book? It is well researched. Both the good and bad qualities of the three prime characters – Effie Gray Ruskin (1828-1897), John Ruskin (1819-1900) and John Everett Millais (1829-1896) are depicted. No character is white-washed and none painted black. The book follows each of them to their death.
Quotes from letters abound. Here lies part of the problem. Too many quotes and too little analysis of how we should view the divergent statements. The author presents the facts and she is very careful to state what is probable but not actually known. What I miss is an in-depth discussion of the relationships. She has all the facts, she has done all the research, and yet I am left uncertain where the blame lies. Clearly it is not all on one side. During Victorian times it was Effie who took the brunt; she was the woman, she was of the “weaker sex”! Today we look with different eyes. Yet, I cannot but wonder if we don’t give the benefit of the doubt now to her. This bothers me. I see faults on both sides. I am left with the nagging worry that we are only able to judge what happened with our 21st Century eyes.
Another problem I have is that while Millais artwork is painstakingly noted, he did this on this date and that then, I do not have the faintest understanding of how this man came to paint “Ophelia”, shown up above. You look at the paining and you learn about the man, but I cannot for the life of me understand how this man painted that painting. I don’t understand the man. I wanted to know more about the Pre-Raphaelite movement.
Rosalyn Landor reads the audiobook. Her reading fits perfectly with the Victorian lines. It is interesting, both the quotes and the way the author expresses herself feel Victorian. Her language, her phrases and her ways of speech feel steeped in Victorian ideology. This too gave me trouble. Quotes are one thing but I felt the author could have expressed herself more clearly.
Every chapter begins with a quote from Middlemarch by George Eliot. The author states that this is the basis for that story.
Oh my, I did like this. It is light, but cute and fun and will make you smile. I certainly do recommend it.
So what is this about? On the surface it iOh my, I did like this. It is light, but cute and fun and will make you smile. I certainly do recommend it.
So what is this about? On the surface it is about a Mr. Ordinary, an unpretentious little guy, but he is honest and hardworking. He is kind. He is happy with little. He doesn't need a big fancy house or a flashy job or fancy clothes. It is an adventure story too. Travel on airplanes and boats - a trip that you would not imagine!
There is a peculiar characteristic to this book. The details. Nevil Shute was an aeronautics engineer. You can tell. The book is filled with detailed descriptions of machines and mechanical gadgets - for airplanes, for boats, for lumber mills. Parts of machines - coil winders and plate fittings and gear boxes and hydraulic jacks and roller chains and sprockets and lathes and heat transfer gizmos and…. I don't know what all these things are but they sure make the story told feel thoroughly authentic. Yet you are not confused. You do understand what is going one through all the jumble of details.
So do all the details bore you? No, because the message conveyed is about people. The message conveyed is so simple and so obvious, but one we often forget. The scenarios drawn are not believable, but they will make you smile.
I listened to the audiobook narrated by Frank Muller. He reads pretty darn quickly. He lavishly impersonates; let's say exaggerates the different characters. The Scott sounds very Scottish, the American very American, the women sweet, the dumb guys sounds a bit like a moron. Still this is all kind of appropriate because it makes you smile even more. It is funny because Jack, the one who is supposed to be so stupid....well, is he really? The book andthe narration will make you smile. The two fit each other.
This book is fun. The story is cute. I guarantee it will put a smile on your face. Do you need to smile? Go read it! ...more
ETA: So I woke up at 4 AM irritated b/c I had left stuff out of my review. I should have given examples of the humor. One chapter is entitled somethinETA: So I woke up at 4 AM irritated b/c I had left stuff out of my review. I should have given examples of the humor. One chapter is entitled something like, 'Don't Try To Commit Suicide in a Tight Skirt". What else? Svetlana wanted to be cremated after her death. She told her daughter, Olga, to spread her ashes over a river in Wisconsin. Then she got thinking ....her daughter would be accused of polluting the river because they were the ashes of Stalin's daughter! Her daughter spread then over the Pacific.
This book is fantastic!
It is well written, based on solid research, engaging and will leave you rooting for Svetlana. Svetlana who? Svetlana Iosifovna Alliluyeva (1926-2011). Stalin's only daughter, or Lana Peters, the name by which she preferred to be called. The book covers her entire life.
What do I mean by well written? We are presented with both detailed and sometimes contradictory information. When divergent explanations are possible the reader is given adequate information to draw their own conclusion. Many, many quotes are provided, both about Svetlana and from the mouth of Svetlana. Great lines, wise lines, funny lines. There certainly is humor in this book that could have been so dark. Historical events related to her life are those that are presented; there is a perfect balance of personal and historical facts.
The information presented is thorough and detailed, but never dry. Svetlana's life story is utterly fascinating. What she lived through is exciting and will have you on the edge of your seat - not once, not twice, but many times. The book plunges you immediately into her defection in 1967 from the U.S.S.R. Then it backtracks. You must have heard about Frank Lloyd Wright's wives and about Taliesin. Well, Svetlana's fourth husband was Wes Peters, the son of Frank Lloyd Wright's last wife (Olgivanna) and Frank Lloyd Wright's stepson! Anybody who has read The Women by T.C. Boyle will certainly want to read this too. If you have read that you will know of the shenanigans of these architects, of these communal artisans. Their behavior, well, let’s leave it at this, Svetlana fit right in. Sort of, in some ways, until…...
You know what kind of a father she had. Did you know that her mother died when she was six and a half? That her father killed, imprisoned and utterly destroyed many of their own family? That when she defected to the U.S. she left behind two children? There is more you don’t know.
Are you interested in love stories? Svetlana spent her life searching for love.
The reason why I loved this book, beyond the fact that it is well executed, is that Svetlana was such an amazing person.....but human. The author shows you who she was in her soul, intimately and honestly, by her deeds, by her humor, by her anger, by her willingness to say she was sorry, by her humility. She was head-strong. She was volatile and emotional. She had a temper! She was very intelligent. I really admire her. What spunk. What courage. You have to read this book to meet this woman.
Here is one of those few exceptional non-fiction books that is simple to read because it is so engaging, because you have to know what happens. Why? Because you come to care.
This book shows you who Svetlana was in her heart, in her head. I admire her because she never gave up, even though she had such a hard life. You root for her, regardless of her foolish mistakes. Everybody thinks she was wealthy – just forget that! So many lies have been woven around her. You have to read this book to get to the truth.
One word about the audiobook narration by Karen Cass. I wanted to know and remember every detail. I wanted to forget nothing, and for that I need a very slow narration. While Cass does a very good job, I personally wish it had been a bit slower. I don't think others are quite as neurotic about speed as I am.
Now I want to read all the books written by Svetlana Alliluyeva. Unfortunately only some of the titles are listed here at GR. ...more