So, after checking repeatedly over the past few weeks and reminding myself that my 100th post was coming up…I completely spaced and forgot all about it. So instead I give you…101! That’s right, around here we celebrate the little victories (such as the fact that I didn’t wait until my 120th post or something).
In other news, I just wanted to say that I am having a fantastic reading month. At the moment I’m reading Dracula every night before bed– except for last night, because I had way too much sugar in my system and I knew that a creepy book + sugar = guaranteed nightmares. But Dracula was calling me rather fiercely. I am really looking forward to reading this a second time once I finish the first go-round. I’m afraid that I’m missing a lot of details because the plot just drives me forward with a mixture of horror and anticipation. Wednesday night I ended up reading ahead a bit because I was so gripped by what was happening. Stoker certainly knows how to play with suspense!
William Godwin’s novel, Caleb Williams, has been a pleasant surprise. I wasn’t expecting much from a philosophical novel written in the 1790s (no reason for this dismal outlook really) but so far it has been fantastic. The novel’s original title was Things as They Are and it centers on the experience of Caleb Williams, a young man who becomes a secretary/librarian for Ferdinando Falkland, a country squire. Falkland is sometimes given over to uncontrollable rages and emotions, and when Williams searches for a reason in Falkland’s past, he uncovers a terrible secret. As a result, he is persecuted, imprisoned, and later hunted relentlessly by Falkland. His former benefactor turns into his worst enemy. I don’t know if it’s Godwin’s use of the first person narrative, but I found myself engaged with the story in a way that’s often rare for the books I read for school. Moreover, there’s almost a lyrical quality to the rhythm of his prose that just entices me to read further. Philosophical and political debates are couched within the action of the story in an almost seamless way (keep in mind that this has been written on the heels of the French Revolution and in the face of increasing governmental conservatism in England). I’m thrilled because this may be a novel I do research on this semester, and I’m really looking forward to it. And as far as research is concerned: I actually have both topics ready to go! I’m still in the early stages of planning, getting sources, and too many trips to the library, but I at least have a solidifying idea of where my research is heading, and that’s unheard of for me.
I’ve also started Jean Rhys’s The Wide Sargasso Sea for the Unread Authors Challenge. I’m not that far along, but I’m enjoying it thoroughly. And I’m hoping to start my other three book choices over the weekend. Happy reading everyone!