søndag den 25. januar 2009

Weekly Geeks 2009 # 3

For at vise mine reelle hensigter, har jeg besluttet mig for at deltage i "Weekly Geeks" denne uge. Jeg har valgt at besvare sp 2 og 3 (i hvert fald så nogenlunde da).

2) Read at least one chapter of a classic novel, preferably by an author you're not familiar with. (og her begynder snyderiet allerede: jeg kender udmærket Wilkie Collins, og de to bøger jeg har af ham står i sommerhuset, men jeg har i hvert fald læst den ene i 2008).

De bedst kendte, klassiske krimiforfattere er formodentlig Arthur Conan Doyle og Edgar Allan Poe. Personligt holder jeg dog mere af Wilkie Collins, "Kvinden i hvidt" (1859), som også er højst aktuel for danske læsere, da forlaget Tiderne Skifter udgav en ny udgave i 2008.

Bogen var en nyskabelse i 1860ernes England, og regnes for at være en tidlig kriminalroman. Da jeg som nævnt ikke lige har bogen for hånden, klipper jeg lige en bid af Litteratursidens glimrende anmeldelse: "Walter Hartright møder en nat i Londons gader en kvinde klædt i hvidt som er på flugt fra en gruppe forfølgere. Han hjælper hende, men kan ikke siden få hende ud af hovedet. Kort tid efter får Walter Hartright ansættelse som tegnelærer hos den hovne godsejer, Mr. Fairlie, hvis niece, Laura, han skal uddanne, og som i øvrigt til forveksling ligner den mystiske kvinde i hvidt. De to forelsker sig i håbløst i hinanden på trods af at Laura har lovet sig bort til en anden mand, den spøjse Sir Percival Glyde."

Og så kan det 600 sider lange drama begynde. Rigtig hyggelig bog for læsere, som holder af viktorianske (spændings)romaner.

3) Let's say you're vacationing with your dear cousin Myrtle, and she forgot to bring a book. The two of you venture into the hip independent bookstore around the corner, where she primly announces that she only reads classic literature. If you don't find her a book, she'll never let you get any reading done! What contemporary book/s with classic appeal would you pull off the shelf for her?

Jeg ville helt klart lukke munden på kusine Myrtle med Margaret Laurence, "Stenenglen" (1988). Hun ville overhovedet ikke opdage, at bogen var hundrede år for ny, i det mindste ikke før hun var fanget ind.

Denne fantastiske dannelsessroman med den kvindelige hovedperson Hagar (mere strid og stædig end godt er), hører hjemme på min personlige top-ti. Laurence drager på fremragende vis paralleller mellem unge Hagar Shipley og Hagar fra det Gamle Testamente, Abrahams trælkvinde, som han fik et barn med. En storslået bog om en skotsk familie i Canada, og en stærk kvinde, som kæmper med sig selv og mændene omkring hende helt på sin egen måde.

Weekly Geeks # 3.
To show my honourable intentions, I have made up my mind to be a geek this week. I have decided to answer questions 2 and 3 (more or less correctly).

2) Read at least one chapter of a classic novel, preferably by an author you're not familiar with. (and here begins my cheating: I know Wilkie Collins fairly well, and the two books I own by him have been left in our cottage - but at least I read one of them in 2008).

The best known classic crime fiction writers are presumably Arthur Conan Doyle and Edgar Allan Poe. Personally, I prefer Wilkie Collins´ book "The Woman in White" (1859) which is even of current interest to Danish readers as "Tiderne Skifter" published a Danish edition in 2008.

The book was quite innovative in Charles Dickens´ England, and is regarded as an early mystery novel. As I do not have the book at hand, I have borrowed some lines from a Danish review, "One night in the streets of London Walter Hartright meets a woman dressed in white who is escaping from a group of persecutors. Mr Hartright assists her and is unable to forget her. Soon after he is employed as a drawing master by the arrogant landowner Mr Fairlie, to teach his niece Laura. (Incidentally, Laura and the woman in white are hardly distinguishable). The two of them fall helplessly in love even though Laura is betrothed to another man.

Let the 600-pages-long drama begin. A cosy read to people who are fond of Victorian (mystery) books.

3) Let's say you're vacationing with your dear cousin Myrtle, and she forgot to bring a book. The two of you venture into the hip independent bookstore around the corner, where she primly announces that she only reads classic literature. If you don't find her a book, she'll never let you get any reading done! What contemporary book/s with classic appeal would you pull off the shelf for her?

I would definitely shut dear Myrtle up with "The Stone Angel", written by Margaret Laurence in 1988. She would never realize her mistake - at least not until she had been captured.

This great bildungsroman with the female main character Hagar (more headstrong and stubborn than is good for her) belongs to my personal top-ten. (Yes, I happen to read books without murders). Laurence draws parallels between young Hagar Shipley and Old Testament Hagar, Abraham´s bondwoman who gives birth to his firstborn son. A magnificent novel about a Scottish family in Canada, and a strong woman fighting with herself and the men around her on her own terms.

[Cannot help adding a link to an interesting analysis of the book: "The Biblical Archetypes of The Stone Angel"]

9 kommentarer:

Manola sagde ...

Hi Dorte, thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving your comment. Your feedback is greatly appreciated.
hugs,
Manola xo
Townsville, Qld, Australia

Ali sagde ...

The Stone Angel sounds like the perfect pick for Myrtle.

Someone else mentioned Collins, too. I'd never heard of him, so thanks for educating me!

Dorte H sagde ...

Thank you very much, Manola.
We all like when people see our work :)

Ali: if you like Victorian novels, e.g. Dickens, I think you´d appreciate Wilkie Collins. It is the same type of novel originally published chapter by chapter in magazines.

Dawn @ sheIsTooFondOfBooks sagde ...

I don't know *The Stone Angel*, but if it's good enough for Myrtle, it's good enough for me :)

Dorte H sagde ...

Never thought I should say this about a book which is not crime fiction on this blog, but believe me, "The Stone Angel" is good enough for anyone :)
It is out of sale in Denmark, unfortunately.

Julia Smith sagde ...

Dorte H - can you believe 'The Stone Angel' was taught in my high school Canadian literature class? It's a book many Canadians have been forced to read, fortunately or unfortunately. In artistic circles, of course, it's recognized as the gem it is. Including me!

I read Wilkie Collins' 'The Moonstone' and really enjoyed it. That was quite some time ago.

Dorte H sagde ...

Julia: yes, I can believe that, because it is such a great literary work. I can also believe, however, that some students meet great literature too early, meaning before they are mature enough to appreciate it. Fortunately I did not come across it until I was a teacher myself :)
Yeah, teachers rule - and we like it. lol

bkclubcare sagde ...

Ok, you've got me intrigued abt The Stone Angel. I'm off to click on the links and learn more...

Dorte H sagde ...

Hi "Care" & thanks for visiting :)
If you want ´professional reviews´ on The Stone Angel you will have to look elsewhere. The article focuses on an analysis of the biblical figures which Laurence uses so well.