Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wuthering Heights book review

Title: Wuthering Heights
Author: Emily Bronte (it was originally published under the pseudonym of Ellis Bell)
1st published: 1847
Gene: Gothic Novel
More info: The second was edited by Charlotte Bronte. It was originally written in three volumes. (the copy I read was edited by Charlotte)
My rating: 3/5

"Emily Bronte's only novel, Wuthering Heights remains on the literature's most disturbing explorations into the dark side of romantic passion. Heathcliff and Cathy believe they're destined to love each other forever, buy when cruelty and snobbery separate them, their untamed emotions literally consume them.
Set amid the wild and stormy Yorkshire moors, Wuthering Heights, and unpolished and devastating epic of childhood playmates who grow into soul mates, is widely regarded as teh most original tale of thwarted desire and heartbreak in Emglish language."
-from the back of the book, Barnes and Noble Classics above copy.

From the first few lines the book has a dark cloud hanging over it. The setting on the moor gives it a wild feel, and even the name of the house, Wuthering Heights, feels dark. This book really does deserve being categorized at gothic.

One of the things that I feel is important to understand this book; is to understand how drastically shocking this book was for the times. I love to read introductions in books(I tend to read them after I read the book, I find them more interesting then) so far I have found that Barnes & Noble books have the best intros. Anyway, when I read the Jane Eyre intro it mentions how Jane Eyre, and most especially Wuthering Heights, where so shocking to the culture into which it they where first published. I even remember reading that one reviewer called Wuthering Heights "immoral". I read this all with great interest, but did not fully comprehend why Wuthering Heights would be called "immoral", until I read the book. Then I understood, and though I would feel that perhaps immoral is a strong word I can understand why the reviewer felt that way. I was a little surprised at some of the things that happened in the books. It is not a "bad" book at all. I think the immoral part comes from the actions of Heathcliff.

Another thing that is surprising about the book is when you consider who the author was. Emily Bronte was the daughter of a minister. She grew up in a very secluded place. She had little to no contact with the world. She was a very quiet, shy person. I believe she was also very religious. She along with her other siblings where always writing from the time she was very young, and they had very wonderful imaginations. Another thing of interest is that Emily was obsessed with the after life, she looked forward to heaven in a way. Very little in general though is known about her though, we have some of her diary which suggest she was very involved in managing the family house hold (her fathers house, she never married), and she enjoyed cooking. When I think about this it is mind boggling to me how on earth she came up with the story that she did! Where on earth did it come from?

I felt that this book was not as well written as Jane Eyre. I found my self comparing it a lot to Jane Eyre, even though Wuthering Heights was written by a different author. I did love how she presented the story through the narrator Nelly. I was little confused for the first few chapters, but then got the hang of things. I was also confused about who was who, but my copy of the book had a family tree in it which made thing much easier!

I really really really did not like any of the characters! All of the seemed to me selfish and mean. There where only two that I like that was Haeriton (I think that is how you spell his name), and Catherine number 2 (there are two Catherines the book which can also make it confusing). They seemed like the only decent people there, though Catherine was very mean to Haereton for a while. I didn't like Catherine number 1 at all! I detested Heathcliff!!!!!! He was the most horrid person that any writer can ever come up with, even Charlotte said that she was not sure that such beings as Heathcliff should be created. He was selfish, vengeful, and really I think the meanest person that ever lived(or lived in a book). *Spoiler The only happy time in the book is the end when Heathcliff is dead! *End of Spoiler. If any girl thinks Heathcliff is dreamy(as I have heard some do) they must have a very weird idea of dreamy! And it anyone thinks this book is romantic they have not actually payed attention to the book. It is not very romantic at all! It is a revengeful, dark book.
I had a really hard time putting this book down. I wanted to read it all the time, even though I didn't like the characters, the story was very griping, I didn't wan to put down! I think that Every person should read this book because it is such a "one of a kind" kind of book. Over all I think I enjoyed it a lot.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thoughts on Mansfield Park

So sorry for the lack of posting lately! It has finally decided to be summer here, so I have been enjoying the weather!

I finished Mansfield Park a while ago. I enjoyed the book very very much! I think it is now my favorite Jane Austen. I especially enjoyed the more serious themes. I would like to talk about one or two in this post.

The thing that stood out to me the most was this. If Sir Thomas had taken more time to get to know his daughters, and to talk to them, and not seem so stiff. If he had been a friend to them; would they have payed more attention to his morals and ideas of honor, and propriety? Would it have saved them from their down fall, and the entire family being shamed by their actions?

If Lady Bertrem had been a better mother to her daughters, and not spoiled them. Would they have grown into proper well behaved ladies? Would they have been not so quick to act as they did. Would they have been more guarded against the charms of Henry Crawford?

In general I feel like this theme is for parents to be parents. When you have a family, it takes more than just having babies. You half to raise them and be involved in their life. This book made me appreciate all that my parents have done for me! How they have been involved in my life and how the things that they teach me have more meaning and I pay attention to because I have a relationship with my parents.

Here is a toast to all the wonderful involved parents that are out there! Thank you for all your hard work. I know it is hard to be a parent! May God bless you and grant you many years.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Icon of the Dormition of Mary

Yesterday we celebrated the Dormition of Mary. This is the icon for this feast.

We are to take Mary's life as an example of what our own should be. She served God all her life, and gave her life to him.

Most holy Theotokos pray to God for us!

I wanted to post it yesterday, but I didn't have time. I am very sorry!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Jane Austen questions #3

Time for more Jane Austen Week questions. This is the last of them so I hope you enjoy! :)

6. Top three Jane Austen Adaptations, and why?

Pride & Prejudice 1995 it one of them. I feel that this one is the most faithful the the book, and Colin Firth did an amazing job with Mr. Darcy, he got his character down. I love all the costumes, and it all ways is good for a laugh too. It is my families favorite.

I have not seen any other adaptations, so I cannot compare here. I love all the actors in this one they all did a great job portraying the characters. I love the scenery, and the costumes, but they don't always look very Regency to me. I really really love Emma Thompsons portrayal of Elinor.

This one is a definite family favorite. We all laugh and enjoy the humor, and as far as I can remember it is very close to the book. I really did not like the 2008 one. Emma drove me crazy in that one, and I felt like they completely ruined her character. I didn't like Emma in that one at all, and I didn't like Mr. Knightly either. I think the only character I liked was Harriet Smith.

7. Top 3 Jane Austen characters that "take delight in vexing" you?

George Wickham: He is so slimy sweet, and then you find out what kind of a man he is!

Willoughby: I really must admit that I feel sorry for him, but I am also very very angry for him running around and breaking girls hearts! Really I am very mad at him about that!!

Henry Crawford: I am so mad at him for breaking girls hearts for amusement!!!!!! I wonder if he would feel the same if someone broke his heart?

8. Jane Austen sequels....Do you like them or not? I have never read any of them. My mom has read a couple of Pride and Prejudice ones and she like them. I think it would depend on if it was faithful to the characters.

9. Do you have a favorite spot to keep all your Jane Austen "stuff"? I don't really have Jane Austen "stuff", but if I did I would keep it on my head board(which is like a personal bookshelf. I love it!).

10. Which Jane Austen character Are you most like? I would have to say I think I am most like Elinor Dashwood. I really really adore her!! I try to be sensible and calm.

11. What was your introduction to Jane Austen? My first introduction was watching Pride and Prejudice 1995 with my mother. I was about 7 or 8 I think.


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Jane Austen Advise column

I like this idea of taking a character, who is not one of Jane Austen's, write a question, and have a character, who is a Jane Austen character, answer. I am not sure that I will be very good at it but I will give it a try. I have picked Catherine #2 from Wuthering Heights, because I have recently read the book, and she was the only character I liked. I chose Jane to answer because I feel she is the easiest character that I feel I know well enough to do this with. I am not completely pleased with it, but it is the best that I can come up with. I did enjoy doing it though very very much!

Dear Jane Austen Advise Column,
My name is Catherine Linton. I have a very very terrible problem! I was forced to marry someone, who I loved and I thought loved me, he is now dead, and I am now forced to live with my abominable father-in-law named Heathercliff! He positively hates me, and cannot stand the sight of me! I am so very very miserable. I have not see any of the people I truly love, and my dear dear father is dead! There is this horrible man here who keeps spouting about religion, and the devil. And a young man who has no learning what so ever, but wants to learn, I think he is an absolutely funny for trying. He is really quite annoying, and I make fun of him when ever I find him trying to teach himself how to read.I am quite ashamed of him even though everyone says he is my cousin! I am at a loss for what to do!
Catherine Linton

Dear Catherine,
I am so sorry about your late husbands death. I send you my deepest condolences! I am very sorry that you were forced to marry someone I am at a loss for what to say, but I suppose it is not so bad since you love him, but you are not sure about his love? I am sure that your father-in-law is not so bad, perhaps it is because he has just lost his son that he is so angry right now, and that seeing you just reminds him of what he has lost. I would just be kind the the man who is so religious he may have some good things to say so do not dismiss him completely, I know how much some people can be annoying when all they talk about, and think about is just one thing. You should not be so hard on your cousin. He is trying to help himself where he feels lacking, and if you are embarrassed about his ignorance you should encourage him and help him not make fun of him. I would try to be kind to everyone, when you are kind to others they will be kind to you.

Let me know what you think, and how I could improve it!

Jane Austen Week questions #2

First of all this is my 100th post!!!!!!!!! I am very excited about it! :)

This is also part to of the questions for Jane Austen week. So without further ado....

3. Who are your top 3 favorite Jane Austen heroines and why?

Elinor Dashwood is most perhaps my favorite! I love her very very much! The more times I read S&S, and watch, the more I find I like her, and relate to her best of all. I love how she is so kind and caring for her sisters, even when you would not really want to be kind and caring. I take her as an example of sibling kindness. She is always prime and proper. She is in a way my role model. Elinor is the oldest of 3 sisters, and I am the oldest of 4 sisters. So I understand her feelings as a older sibling.

Elizabeth Bennet I like when I was younger because we had the same name. :) Now as I have come to be more familiar with her I like her because she is not afraid to speak her mind. She is smart witty, and she is passionate, but not like Marian Dashwood. She is a reasonable person, and can be very kind.

Jane Bennet is not really a heroine in the book, but love her so much that is is one of my favorites! She is so sweet and loving. She always tries the think the best of people, even when is seems impossible that they could be good. Who could not love Jane? I really adore her and feel some what protective of her. Another thing here is that she is the oldest of 5 sisters, and am, as I said before, the oldest of 4 sisters. I just love Jane!

4. Who are your 3 favorite Jane Austen Heroes and why?

Edward Ferris is sweet, kind shy, and not always sure of himself. He love Elinor which means I love him for being sensible and knowing that Elinor is an amazing person. He like children (he played with Margaret at least in the movie. I have not read the book for a while so I don't remember if he did in the book :). He trys keeps his promises even if his heart does not want to, because of this I would call him and honorable gentleman.

Mr. Darcy how could one not like Mr. Darcy? I didn't like how he was proud and seemed some what arrogant. He also was a bit of a snub. But he was a gentleman and he did try to include Elizabeth when others would have left her out. He is also very funny at least I think he is though his character is not suppose to be funny like Mr. Bennet. It is a different kind of funny.

Colonel Brandon, who I have forgotten to include a picture of, is sweet and kind. He cares about people, and loves Marian even though she does not love him and wishes her happiness. I always have thought that the person who loves you most will do what will make you happiest, even if it is not what they want.

5. Any honorable mention for 3, 4, and 5?

Elinor Dashwood
Jane Bennet
Edward Ferris
& Colonel Brandon

And that concludes my 100th post.

PS. Should I do something more 100th posty after the Jane Austen Week? Do you have any suggestions?

Monday, August 8, 2011

Jane Austen Week questions part 1

Jane Austen Week has started! I am so excited! I would have posted this yesterday, but I was canning peaches with my mother and a friend all day. And when I came home I was just too tired! Anyway I am copying The old Fashioned Charm and doing my questions throughout the week! I love the idea. I find all the questions at once a little over whelming! :)

1.What is your favorite thing about Jane Austen? Why? I am ashamed to admit that I don't know much about Jane Austen herself. From what I know she sounds like she was an interesting person and I would love to have met her. (what better way to know more about her ;) The reason I don't no much about is because I have not taken the trouble to research more about her. This is a very sad question for me.

2 What are your top 3 Jane Austen novels? Why? My top 3....... I think Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, and Mansfield Park. When I was little I like P&P because I had the same name as the heroine, but now that I am older I like the story, the characters make me laugh, and the humor. S&S is one that I just like because I identify with Elinor a lot. I love the story though two sisters with no fortune what so ever end up marrying the people who love them best, and Marian at least (Elinor not so much) end up being quite rich, but they are all happy. :) Mansfield Park is more mature and not the quite the same romantic stuff that is in other Jane Austen novels.

I would have done more questions, but I only want to do 3 questions per post, and 3 of the questions go together. :)


Saturday, August 6, 2011

Where has summer gone?!

Time flies by so fast! It seems like only yesterday that it was spring, and now summer is half way over! What happened? I feel like I didn't get done all the things that I wanted to, because I was waiting for the sun to come out and it didn't come out very much at all, and I just was lazy. I have a problem with being lazy. I need to do something, but I don't do it because I don't want to. I am very unhappy with this because it ends up causing more problems. I have been trying to work on it but it, but it is not easy. I am trying to do stuff when it needs to be done and not waiting till feel like doing it. I have moods where I like to clean more than others, or moods where I like to do different things in general. I need to clean when it needs to be done!

I want to become a better person, but I feel like I fail quite a lot. I am a little frustrated with myself right not so I am ranting at myself.

A slightly happier topic is that the sun did come out for several days in a row. To day it is cloudy, but we needed to cool of a little. Because of the past dreary weather we started school, we only do it on icky days like today, on sunny days we take the day off, that way we have something to do on the yucky days. The weather really has been driving me mad! I want the sun to come out! I am normally not all that bothered by the weather, but this has gotten to me!

I have started Mansfield Park. I am very happy with it so far. I love Fanny's sweet, humble, kind personality! I love Edmund's kindness and smartness!


Friday, August 5, 2011

A book and a flower

I took little Dorrit, and flower, and the camera and had some fun! I like these pictures a lot! Let me know what you think?

This one is my favorite!


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Notebooks, flowers, and pictures

I like to play with the camera and take all kinds of pictures. If I feel I have something to take a picture of. Here is a picture I took of what I have fondly nicknamed "my Shakespeare book". I have quite a few journals, I am not a diary kind of person, so I don't know what to do with them. So I am using this one to put in some of my favorite Shakespeare poems, sonnets, and quotes from plays. It is my collection of favorite works from Shakespeare.

I put the flower there because it looked nice to me. It is one of the ones that I dried.


Monday, August 1, 2011

Jane Austen Week!

Jane Austen Week by Elegance of  Fashion

Elegance of Fashion is having an exciting event coming up! August 7 - 10 Miss Elizabeth Bennet will be hosting at her blog a Jane Austen Week event! I love Jane Austen and wish to read more and learn more about her so I hope this will inspire me!

I love the blog buttons that she has made. The top one is my favorite, and the the one below is my second favorite! :)

Jane Austen Week by Elegance of Fashion

I hope you go over and join! It is going to be wonderful! :)