I'll probably revise this later but for now, I will just say that the back cover of my edition of this book calls it "The Strangest Love Story Ever ToI'll probably revise this later but for now, I will just say that the back cover of my edition of this book calls it "The Strangest Love Story Ever Told" and I have to concur. It is weird, creepy and frankly, not really a love story. It is more of a ghost story, or a tale of revenge and how it can destroy a person's soul. Be prepared to find every single character unlikeable and/ or pathetic. In the early 19th-century words such as alcoholism, child abuse, co-dependence or post traumatic stress weren't used, but whoa do these people need therapy! The two families are about as dysfunctional as it gets. A few things that made it more intriguing are :
that awesome '80s tune by Kate Bush, which I have been unable to get out of my head Come on sing it with me...."Heathcliff, it's me, I'm Cathy, I've come home,I'm so cold...."
the idea that Heathcliff may be mixed-race. Maybe that is a modern interpretation but if he is part Roma, Indian, or black, that adds depth to the story and to his obvious psychological issues
the idea that Nelly Dean, the servant who tells most of the story, is a unreliable narrator and actually manipulates the other characters...twisted!! Me like...and I do think there is something off about her.
Anyway don't forget to shut your windows tonight! There are restless spirits walking the moors....(Shivers) ...more
Some of my students have selected this book for reports and presentations over the years . Just to be clear, they are non-native speakers of English.Some of my students have selected this book for reports and presentations over the years . Just to be clear, they are non-native speakers of English. Sometimes they select the book because it is short. I don't think they realize how intense it is , until they get into it, but few have ever regretted choosing it. I require them to read at least one novel by an American, preferably still-breathing female writer of color, not because I personally dislike the classic Dead White Males, but because said Dead White Makes are covered quite well in their other classes. I consider it my job to create balance and give students a chance to broaden their horizons.
This book made me smile, cringe, and at the end shed a few tears as I turned the last pages on a crowded commuter train. I can absolutely see why the book is controversial. But read it anyway. Teachers, include it anyway. None of the issues it deals with (racism, sexism, poverty, horrific child and spousal abuse, mental illness) have gone away, and the writing is just plain beautiful. Another thing I can absolutely see, is why Morrison won the Nobel Prize for Literature. She happens to be the only still-living American author to have won the Nobel, and the only African-American out of only 14 women. By the way, only 14 women, out of 111 Literature laureates...ummm, what's up with that? Food for thought....more
Some of my students have chosen this book for their final reports, but I am a bit ashamed it took me this long to get to it. What a lovely, funny, heaSome of my students have chosen this book for their final reports, but I am a bit ashamed it took me this long to get to it. What a lovely, funny, heartbreaking story. On the one hand, there are many culturally-specific moments, and more than a few Spanish words in the text. This makes the book a wonderful introduction to Latino culture for those who aren't familiar (like my students here in Japan). On the other hand, the story is universal. A young girl is growing up, has the usual sort of conflicts with her parents and sister, wants to be cool, beautiful, and popular, longs for something more out of life, and is in the process of discovering who she is and where she wants to go. Any reader can relate to those themes. Finally, the fact that the story is told in a series of short vignettes makes it ideal for reluctant readers, English language learners, or those who are just too darned busy to deal with long chapters. ...more
I'm still enjoying this series and have heard enough about the directions it takes, to imagine that I will enjoy the later books even more. That said: tI'm still enjoying this series and have heard enough about the directions it takes, to imagine that I will enjoy the later books even more. That said: the third book was where it started to get all dark and kinky. The fourth book is where Anita started doing things which make no sense and I wanted to whack her upside the head. There's still something I like about her, though. We'll see if she continues to be ridiculous. Also on the positive side, I am really starting to like the supporting characters: Edward the hitman (he's deadpan funny and is, in his own way, a good friend to Anita) Richard the dreamy werewolf (I can see where a good set of claws would come in handy as a junior high teacher!) and Jean-Claude the Master Vampire....hot, hot hot, and willing to wait patiently while the women he desires acts like a bloomin' idiot. All in all, a fun read in spite of feeling frustrated with the protagonist. This was one of the first popular urban fantasy series out there and I imagine a huge percentage of authors were influenced by Hamilton's work....more