Bri Fidelity's Reviews > The Road Through the Wall

The Road Through the Wall by Shirley Jackson
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May 17, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: favourites
Read from March 15 to 20, 2012

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Reading Progress

03/15/2012 page 0
0.0% "My first March re-read. I can't believe it's been two years at least since I read this last; these Goodreads challenges are really chipping away at any sort of organic progression from book to book and back again."
03/17/2012 page 37
17.0% "'James Donald privately regarded his younger brother as an imperfect copy of himself, and was as irritated by Tod as he might have been by any cruel, pointed parody.'"
03/18/2012 page 73
33.0% "'Until he had his coffee he existed in a sort of unpleasant stupor; it was the only thing, he maintained, which enabled him to shave and dress at all each day. Like anyone who possesses such a dubious gift, he was inordinately proud of it, and he delighted, later in the day, of anecdotes of how horrid he had been that morning, or [...] how he had sat numbly in a corner of the car.'" 6 comments
03/20/2012 page 173
79.0% "Okay, we know Shirley loved mystery novels. Who's missing from the party? The Perlmans; the Martins (little George Martin might be a Bad Seed in the making - suspect); Mrs. Mack (the neighbourhood 'witch' - suspect); the Terrels; Mr. Byrne; Tod Donald - of course - partway through (he's the suspect; the scapegoat). Who could've wandered off and come back?"
03/20/2012 page 183
83.0% "OK, discountable suspects, let's see. Textually accounted for: the remaining Desmonds and Donalds and Byrnes; the Merriams; the Ransom-Jones threesome; the Robertses; Miss Fielding. But with the amount of booze going around, anyone could've wandered off and then returned. The Terrels (clumsy childlike Beverly - suspect) and Perlmans are indoors; Mr. Byrne is working. The Martins have disappeared from the narrative."
03/20/2012 page 184
84.0% "'Tod thought they were looking for him, and yet there had never been this much fuss made over him before in his life, and the principal reason he had not run out and said "Here I am," was his fear of the sudden surprise and humiliating laughter when they saw him and realised he thought they were looking for him.'"
03/20/2012 page 192
87.0% "'Harriet Merriam kept house for her father after her mother's death; she never married.' Okay, either Omniscient Narrator Shirley is looking into the future, or Harriet is only - at the time of publication in 1948: the Prologue places the action in 1936 - about 27. I for one don't feel like a...whatever the male version of a spinster is, at 26."

Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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message 1: by Moira (new) - added it

Moira Russell I still haven't read this! Must fix.


message 2: by Bri (new) - rated it 5 stars

Bri Fidelity Moira wrote: "I still haven't read this! Must fix."

Absolutely you must fix! A couple of clumsy authorial moments aside - lots of characters have very similar names, and the Prologue introduces everyone in one go: some of the paperback editions even come with a little castlist in the back, so you can keep track - this is perfect Shirley Jackson. Like a themed patchwork of short character-study stories, all interlinked.


message 3: by Moira (new) - added it

Moira Russell REALLY MUST FIX....esp since I'm into reading first novels now, in preparation for the Big Push. The Standing Jump. The whatever. Even if the novel sucks, I need to write it.


message 4: by Bri (new) - rated it 5 stars

Bri Fidelity Moira wrote: "I'm into reading first novels now, in preparation for the Big Push. The Standing Jump. The whatever. Even if the novel sucks, I need to write it."

Oh, hooray! Have you picked out a pseudonym yet? Pseudonyms are good buffers for aspiring novelists, I think.


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