Elizabeth's Reviews > Angels and Insects

Angels and Insects by A.S. Byatt
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's review
May 29, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: postmodern-victorians
Read in May, 2009

I focused on the "Insects" Section of this book (will read "Angels" another time). Byatt does a great job on the Victorian sensibility of the novella, and creates suspense and strong characterization: especially with William and Matty. The lengthy arguments on religious faith and doubt, and on insects described for popular science, though, didn't work as well in the narrative. Because elsewhere, Byatt creates a strong plot drive, I wanted to (and, full disclosure, did) skim these to get on with the story, which has a surprising and transgressive conclusion. It's not that faith and science aren't important to the novella; they're central. However, taking the reader out of the genre of novella and forcing her into the genre of treatise is alienating, and not necessarily the right move.

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Reading Progress

05/16/2009 page 30
05/19/2009 page 95
26.99% "Really great so far. Lots of authentic Victoriana, plus sex and potential violence. Think I'll just read "Morpho Eugenia" for now."
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