Lizzie's Reviews > To the Lighthouse

To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
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Aug 01, 2009

really liked it
bookshelves: 2009, used-book, heard-of-it, 1001-books, own, public-domain-or-creative-commons

I was intimidated by beginning this book for a long time, but once I did I was really pleased with it. It was much more reachable than I'd feared, and I enjoyed it a lot. It managed to surprise me, too, because it changes so suddenly in the middle, but I think the first half was what I liked best. The drifting thoughts among this group of people are so, so good.

Then the middle section about the house that really is about nothing -- nothing at all is going on and pretty much no one is there -- is weird, but wow some of those sentences, the writing was beautiful. The drifting form returns at the end, and there are some really amazing insights, but it didn't feel as magical as the beginning and I lost a little patience. The depiction of the moody, harsh parent and the siblings united, though, was something.

One of the stars in this rating belongs entirely to the line,

"Nature has but little clay like that of which she moulded you."

which may be my favorite sentence I've read. My other favorite passage was near the end, when Cam describes visiting the men in the study when she is "all in a muddle". I also liked the girls' names a lot: Prue, Minta. And I wished we'd seen more than a paragraph of Nancy, because Nancy was sort of hilarious.

My ISBN apparently matches this edition, but what I actually read looks like this. Chris's mom bought it for me at the Niantic Book Barn in 2005, possibly because I may have read somewhere it is Rennie Sparks's favorite book. Well, that's me for you.
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