Chrissie's Reviews > A Room with a View

A Room with a View by E.M. Forster
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bookshelves: italy, great-britain, humor, hf, classics, love, audible-uk, 2017-read

Published in 1908, this is a classical romance novel with humorous satirical bite. Love stories such as this have been told a million times, but the mordant wit with which Edwardian society is drawn is what makes it special. You read it to laugh. You know how it will end right from the start, but who cares? It's fun. It has a sweet, schmaltzy end that will leave you smiling.

I really have nothing else to say......... Critique of Edwardian life told through humor.

I listened to the audiobook narrated by Steven Crossley. Both the novel and the narration are good.
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Reading Progress

August 19, 2015 – Shelved
August 19, 2015 – Shelved as: wishlist-f
August 19, 2015 – Shelved as: italy
August 19, 2015 – Shelved as: great-britain
August 19, 2015 – Shelved as: humor
August 19, 2015 – Shelved as: hf
August 19, 2015 – Shelved as: classics
September 1, 2015 – Shelved as: to-read
December 16, 2016 – Shelved as: wishlist-f
January 28, 2017 – Shelved as: love
February 7, 2017 – Shelved as: audible-uk
February 7, 2017 – Shelved as: 2017-read
February 7, 2017 – Shelved as: own-unlistened
February 7, 2017 – Shelved as: wishlist-f
February 8, 2017 – Shelved as: own-unlistened
February 14, 2017 – Started Reading
February 15, 2017 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-18 of 18 (18 new)

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Greg Completely agree with everything you say on this one Chrissie.


Carmen Glad you enjoyed this, Chrissie!


message 3: by Chrissie (last edited Feb 15, 2017 11:16PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Chrissie Ha, you two both gave it five stars. Different people, different personalities!

It was rather interesting the final events concerning Miss Bartlett. Her possible "growth" or "change of sentiment" fits well with the tone and message of the book. Maybe readers then, when it came out in 1908, felt it to be more pertinent. Me? I just found it kind of sweet. I like how the message is said through humor.


Carmen Yes, Chrissie, it was a humorous and sweet book. :) I'm glad you read it.


Chrissie Yeah, I am glad I read it.

So how do Forster's other books compare to this? I have the feeling they have a very different tone. I have been considering A Passage to India. Is there humor in that? I assume it is deeper and has more to think about, with the emphasis instead on the social status between the British and Indians.


message 6: by Gill (new)

Gill I don't remember much humour in Passage to India, Chrissie. I remember it as a good book, though.


Pink Not much humour in A Passage to India, i think it's quite different in tone and a more developed work. Seeing as you rated this one 3 stars, I think you should try it.


Chrissie You both thus confirm that Passage to India has a completely different tone. I don't know; it was the humor in A Room with a View that saved the book for me. Without that it would have been like so many other books.

But what is it in PTI that made it good? The characterizations? The lines? It's message about the different social groups and how the Indians and the Brits saw each other? Have you guys read Indian Summer: The Secret History of the End of an Empire? Now that was super! Maybe I will compare it to that and be disappointed........


Carmen I have never read any other Forster.


Chrissie Carmen, OK.


message 11: by Greg (new) - rated it 5 stars

Greg Chrissie, A Passage to India is largely about the precarious position of the races with British occupation. I don't remember it well as I read it long ago, but I liked it at the time. I wonder if it would feel a bit old fashioned compared to other more modern writers on the same question? I feel sure I'd still like it if I re-read it though. I don't recall much humor.

I gave Room with a View 5 stars because I found it such an absolute delight to read. I laughed out loud many times and smiled throughout. With all the problems in the world that need to be dealt with, I need books like that sometimes. Compared with other books in that light human comedy class of books, I think it's extraordinarily good. I never get tired of it. I just love the depictions of human folly - very realistic I think; that's why it's so funny.

Forster's other books mostly have a similar focus on social interactions/social systems, but A Room With a View is the funniest. The others have more darkness in them than Room. To me though, A Passage To India stands apart from the resr. It feels almost as if it were written by a different author, much different in tone and focus.


Chrissie Greg wrote: "I gave Room with a View 5 stars because I found it such an absolute delight to read. I laughed out loud many times and smiled throughout. ."

YES! One needs books like this occasionally!

I guess I should give Passage a try. Thanks for your help.


Manny You finished already? I'm just starting. I read the first chapter but I have to re-read it. There are a number of subtle themes I need to get straight before I move on.

There was some humor in A Passage to India. There were all sorts of muddles that caused confusion. But it was not a comedic work as I think is A Room with a View.


message 14: by Chrissie (last edited Feb 17, 2017 10:17PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Chrissie Yep, Manny. I read one book at a time and I read/listen at meals, sitting in the car and when I have quiet time. However I am incapable of doing chores while I listen. Other people can, I cannot.

Have fun, Manny. Nobody has said a word over there in the thread......


message 15: by Dawn (new) - rated it 5 stars

Dawn Chrissie ~ one of my all time favorite books I read as a girl was A Room With A View ! I loved the humor and I also loved learning about the way they entertained themselves during that period of time. I was just a girl in grade school trying to read the classics . My Mom was also a military brat and spent her main school years from 7-11th grade in an English Boarding School . So I would read and she would fill my head full of history and send me off dreaming to our encyclopedias ! My Uncle was around 16 about that time reading A Passage to India . I tried very hard and finally read it too. It was sad and difficult but also a lovely story . A historical fiction and Forster was and still is a very good writer in my mind . I think hearing A Passage on audio would be even more lovely . Have fun and if you do get the chance , the movie that came out years ago for A Room with A View was absolutely wonderful ! The cinematography was amazing and the acting superb ! ~ Dawn


Chrissie Dawn, it is lovely hearing about your own personal experiences and how they relate to Forster. I plan on reading A Passage to India soon.


message 17: by Joe (new) - rated it 4 stars

Joe Valdez Terrific perspective, Chrissie. I just finished this book and didn't see it as a satire. I thought the wit picked up considerably when the story moved back to England and could see how Cecil was certainly intended to be a poke at a certain type of intellectual in society. I thought it was a work about feminism more than anything.


message 18: by Chrissie (last edited Feb 19, 2017 11:00PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Chrissie Joe wrote: "I thought it was a work about feminism more than anything. "

But look at how Charlotte changes?! Is that feminism?! Nope, you and I saw completely different things.

Me? I saw humor in the lines from early on.

If I had a paper book, I'd give you some quotes that made me laugh...... but I don't.


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