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I've gotta read one before 6th form. Which?
go with Under The Greenwood Tree
Otherwise, I wouldn't start with Jude the Obscure. Far From The Madding Crowd is a better introduction, and also really really nice for summer. Return of the Native or Tess of the D'Urbervilles would also be good.
If you want *really* depressing, read The Well-beloved
Actually what music do you like?
Return of the Native has a very very slow build up before a crunching epic orgy of destruction towards the end: definitely the post-rock fan's novel.
Jude the obscure is unremittingly doom-laden, go for it if you like... Scott Walker, Khante or Sunn o))) I suppose.
Was ok..bit like wading through treacle at some points.
The dad reminded me a bit of Prole's posts
D H Lawrence
was by DH Lawrence. It is a brilliant book though.
a reference to war and peace?
Yes it is. Far From the Madding Crowd is the best Hardy by far. It's funny but it's also achingly sad in the depictions of the farm workers and the realisation that they are the last generation to live that way of life, after centuries of a life where the seasons was the only thing that mattered blah blah.
and when Sgt. Troy does sword practice around Bathsheba it makes my heart feel electric.
I think I might have to read it again this summer. With his strong evocations of the seasons, Hardy makes amazing summer reading.
thanks for reminding me to re-read it!
is pretty great. Eustacia Vye! She's no good in the best possible way. And there's a guy called Diggory Venn, who is awesome.
I shall asvise you to read The Mayor of Casterbridge.
I had to read it at school and see no reason why other people shouldn't suffer too.
DO NOT READ RETURN OF THE NATIVE
worst. book. ever.
The Return of the Native is Spectacular
I really hate Thomas Hardy. I tried, I really did - I've read Return of the Native and Far From The Madding Crowd, but it's all so relentlessly Victorian. I don't like Victorian things.
he's really really NOT Victorian. You can see much more of the emerging modernist movement in him. He's agnostic, bleak, far more sexually explicit that most of his contemporaries and doesn't really go in for moralising. look at the reaction that Jude the Obscure or Tess of the D'Urbervilles got at the time.
his poetry is a massive breath of fresh air in its simplicity compared to the overwrought ridiculousness of most High Victorian poetry.
And I can see the modernist traits all emerging and so on. But it's still swamped in a very classical and rigid novel structure which I find very claustrophobic. It annoys me when a novel is very carefully designed around certain techniques (unity of time, five act structure, etc etc), and it's very obviously so designed.
And when I say "relentlessley Victorian" it's the language use. I know that's a rubbish reason for not liking some writing, but I really can't get into much written in English in the 19th century. It's all corsets and golly gosh.