Spoiler Warning

Book reviews and discussions may contain spoilers. Read at your own risk!

Sunday, January 31, 2010

“If we’re going to be the…(Smart Remarks Book Club)…we have to look literary”


I don’t think I could pick a better book to mirror what I imagine in my mind our own little SRBC to be. Do we not “goad the listeners into wanting to read the books themselves”?….”argued over books and become dearer and dearer to one another”?….and “our evenings together become bright, lively times”?

I loved this book with all of my heart. A novel composed entirely of letters is BRILLIANT. It gives such a unique and varying perspective on all of the events and characters. I felt as if I knew all of the characters intimately. And I am in love with all of them. For me, this book was all about them. Don’t get me wrong, the storyline was fantastic and I love me a little historical fiction. But this is what the book means to me:

Juliet: Intelligent, compassionate, witty and not afraid to be her own person, despite what the world thinks. My favorite lines of hers:

“I much prefer whining to counting my blessings”

Speaking of Mark Reynolds..”He’s too sure he’s right to bother being disagreeable.”

“I do have a tiny infant of an idea, much too frail and defenseless to risk describing, even to you.”

“I knew that all children were gruesome, but I don’t know whether I’m supposed to encourage them in it.”

Speaking to Remy of Elizabeth….”(It would have been better for her not to have such a heart). Yes but worse for the rest of us.”

“Oh bless Speranza for giving her son such a preposterous name as Oscar Fingal O”Flahertie Wills Wilde”

“You may even preen in my presence—this one time, but never again.”

“Would you like to marry me? I’m in love with you so I thought I’d ask.”

“This obsession with dignity can ruin your life if you let it.”

Dawsey: Gentle, kind, humble and selfless. He doesn’t recognize what a leader and example he is to others. There’s more to him than meets the eye and I found that I was left wanting to know even more about him after the book was over. ::sigh:: My only fave line of his was when he swore and fell down the ladder, spraining his ankle, when Juliet proclaimed her love for him. And then they had “the freedom of the shrubbery”.

Isola: I’m asking for a friend like her for my birthday this year (that and a ride in Will Thisby’s cart….he’ll bring a cushion). Quirky, naïve, passionately loyal, and adoringly backwards in many ways. And we all know that “Isola needs little encouragement to bang her hammer. Here are my favorite Isola-isms:

“Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad books”

“..as to who would not desire to have their innermost workings—good and rotten—revealed by the Science of Phrenology? No one, that’s who.”

“I still trust the truth of lumps. It’s just that I’ve read the head bumps of everyone I care for. and it can get tedious.”

“Mrs. Taylor has a rash on her arms. What or who from? Tomatoes or her husband? Look into further.”

“What a blessing that I have no imagination and am able to see things clearly.”

Of course, I enjoyed all the characters. But these were my favorites. I even loved to HATE Miss Adelaide Addison! “I hear that you and the pig farmer are going to regularize your connection. Praise the Lord!” I can’t wait to hear what you all have to say with your “quick wits and silver tongues”. And a special thank you to Michelle for recommending this book for January. I intend to recommend it to anyone and everyone who reads.

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