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Archived Group Reads 2015 > "Christmas Day at Kirby Cottage"

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message 1: by Renee, Moderator (new)

Renee M | 1861 comments Mod
Please use this thread for a discussion of the story, "Christmas Day at Kirby Cottage" by Anthony Trollope. All sections of the story may be discussed here. To avoid spoilers, you may want to refrain from reading the commentary until you have finished the story.


message 2: by Jane (new)

Jane Greensmith (janegs) | 149 comments Sad to say, I found this story a bit of a yawner. It started out promising, but I felt I was slogging through to the inevitable ending.


message 3: by Ginny (new)

Ginny (burmisgal) | 193 comments I think Trollope found Christmas a slog, and this was likely a commissioned story. Putting together a selection of Trollopian Christmas stories must have been a challenge for the editors, because such stories are few and far between. I like that he built the narrative around a young man who also found Christmas a slog--the courtship seems very promising, but Isabel loves the process of Christmas and is angered by such cynicism.
"A great deal of beef is roasted, and a great deal of pudding is boiled, then people try to be jolly by eating more than usual."
She has been looking forward to the holiday with her lover, and he has spoiled it all.


message 4: by Everyman (new)

Everyman | 2531 comments I also found the story a bit weak, except for the saving grace that once again we get a well drawn female character with spunk.


message 5: by Tracy (new)

Tracy (tracyrittmueller) | 54 comments I agree that the story dragged in quite a few places--and yet I found myself enjoying Trollope's rendition of the temporary insanity--the emotional intensity and confusion-- that love can be. I laughed out loud when Archer reported that Isabelle had consented "at last," because I remember how interminable 12 hours could feel when I was young, in love, and waiting for acceptance or acknowledgement of my importance to another person.

But I do think this story would be better with some editing and rewriting.


message 6: by Deborah (new)

Deborah (deborahkliegl) | 923 comments I thoroughly enjoyed the story. I don't know if Trollope thought Christmas was a slog. I do know he requested he be paid 100 pounds for this story. His female characters are strong, and he appears to find the societal restrictions and young love to be amusing.


message 7: by Charlotte (new)

Charlotte (charlottecph) | 271 comments I like this story more than Mistletoe Bough. Placing romantic drama right in the course of Christmas day; that is a perfect Chrsitmas story!


message 8: by Renee, Moderator (new)

Renee M | 1861 comments Mod
Trollope really does female characters extremely well. He must have devoted himself to observation and keen listening.


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