• Book Talk,  Uncategorized

    We Have Always Lived in the Castle: The Subversive, Witchy, Magic of Shirley Jackson

    Hello readers! It’s been far too long since I’ve posted I know but things got very crazy for me last month and I still feel like I’m playing catch up. Near the beginning of October I went on a trip to northern Georgia (where I took these photographs featured in the article!) and when I returned the job I’d recently accepted at the local library was finally ready to start finalizing the necessary paperwork. So within a short time of arriving home I was doing preliminary employment work and then I started working in earnest not long after. The past two and a half weeks have definitely been an adjustment…

  • Book Talk,  Guest Posts,  Uncategorized

    Venetia’s Blackberries: A Needlework Inspiration From Regency Fiction

    ā€œ[Venetia] had never been in love; and at five-and-twenty her expectations were not high. Her only acquaintance with romance lay between the covers of the books she had read [ā€¦]ā€ It is with great pleasure that I come here as a guest today to share a special project and chat about one of my favourite books by a favourite author: Venetia by Georgette Heyer. Iā€™m Anne, an embroidery blogger over at The Diary of a Northern Belle, where I like to share my needlework adventures. A hopeless book addict, I often find embroidery inspiration within the pages of my favourite novels. I mostly read classics and historical romances and have…

  • Book Talk,  Uncategorized

    The Moonstone: How Wilkie Collins Popularized the Detective Genre

    It’s that time of year again where if you live anywhere other than the southern US, (Florida specifically in my case), then you’re probably starting to feel the first crispness of fall in the air. With the changing of the seasons certain genres immediately spring to mind and are reliably popular year after year. One of these is the mystery and detective genre. Whether you like spooky and grisly murder mysteries or cozy whodunits, many people find themselves reaching for these titles as they settle down by the fireside. There is something powerfully psychological, I believe, about autumn and winter that make us all more likely to retreat into ourselves…

  • Book Talk,  New Releases,  Uncategorized

    Small Favors: Erin A Craig’s New Twist On A Familiar Fairy Tale

    I really love fairy tale retellings, especially if they’re done well, so when I got a hold of Erin A. Craig’s debut novel, House of Salt and Sorrows, I was very excited. A dark, moody, Gothic retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses, the book pulled me right in and had me gripped from the very first page with its lyrical writing. I loved the macabre twists too that reminded me a lot of Edgar Allan Poe, and how the story kept you guessing what would happen next. So after enjoying this book so much, I was especially eager to get a hold of Small Favors, and even more ecstatic when…

  • Book Talk,  Uncategorized

    Orlando: An Exploration of the In-Between Spaces of Gender and Love

    When most people think of Virginia Woolf, they tend to think of her signature stream of consciousness style expressed in novels like Mrs. Dalloway, (which I have already written about). But my first encounter of Woolf was actually through one of her lesser known works. Orlando occupies a rather strange place in the Woolf canon. Written after the famous Mrs. Dalloway where Woolf was already transitioning into and developing her signature style, comes this novel. On a surface reading, the style seems to embody a more traditional style. But far from being a slave to convention, the writing of Orlando is more subtly insubordinate. It is also a product of…

  • Book Talk,  Uncategorized

    Handsome, Clever, and Rich: A Review of Emma (Novel and Film)

    By sheer good fortune, (and my birthday being in early March, thus making it predate the first pandemic lock-down), in 2020, I was able to go to the theater to see Autumn De Wilde’s first full length feature film- Emma! I am always a bit nervous whenever there is a new adaption of a classic, if only because I have been dissatisfied in the past because often newer adaptions make changes to the story which I often don’t particularly like. But overall, I found this film to be quite enjoyable and an absolute visual feast! The production quality of this film was extremely high and a costume lover’s dream. I…

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    Madame Bovary: Romantic Fantasy and Bourgeois Realism.

    Many people, myself included, at one point may have lumped Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina and Madame Bovary into the same category. On the surface they do bear close similarities. Though Madame Bovary is by far the shorter of the two, both novels feature unhappy women who commit adultery and who are both summarily punished for their actions with unremitting guilt that drives them to suicide. But their situations in life, and how they come about these ends, are different. Emma Bovary’s story is infused with a kind of fate that Anna Karenina’s is not, or at least isn’t to the same extent. These themes, of fate and inevitability, are what drive…

  • Book Talk,  Uncategorized

    Anne of Green Gables: Canada’s Sweetheart

    Fiery-haired, bright-eyed, Anne Shirley became cemented as a Canadian icon very nearly as soon as her story hit shelves in 1908. Even reading Anne of Green Gables one hundred and twelve years later, it is easy to see how the plucky orphan with her flaming red hair and flair for the dramatics won the hearts’ of young and old. Though L.M. Montgomery is most well known for Anne of Green Gables, for whose titular heroine she went on to write seven more books chronicling both Anne’s adventures and later that of her children, she also went on to pen the lesser known Emily of New Moon trilogy, along with Pat…

  • Book Talk,  Uncategorized

    Mrs. Dalloway: An Introspective Portrait of Life

    It seems oddly fitting in some ways that in these confusing times we are all living in I would pick up Virginia Woolf’s novel Mrs. Dalloway, a work that confused and still continues to confuse readers and critics alike, even today in the 21st century. Despite defying categorization, Woolf definitely has her admirers, and her experimental style continues to garner praise for its unconventionality. But of course there are also detractors. Woolf is an author that is sometimes not always to everyone’s taste. A lot of people might even now deride some of the very things that once made her work so revolutionary, and instead of applauding it for its…

  • Book Talk,  Uncategorized

    Marriage, Class, and Love in Charlotte Bronte’s Shirley

    Many readers were no doubt first introduced to the Bronte sisters through either Emily Bronte’s novel, Wuthering Heights, or Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre. I myself was no exception, and it is easy to see why these two iconic books have shaped what people think of when they think of a quintessential “Bronte novel,” since both conjure up images of windswept moors and thwarted lovers. (These books in particular are also by far the most popular because Anne’s works in years past were little read, and are only in the last decade or so gaining popularity.) Shirley then, at first glance, seems a different creature entirely. More akin to a smaller…