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  1. I saw a young woman on a train reading the book a...

    I saw a young woman on a train reading the book a couple of days ago. I dare say she'd have been turning the pages quicker if it had been Jilly Cooperr's Riders. I still can't see how number 2 in the...
  2. The next Woolf book is The Waves at Number 16....

    The next Woolf book is The Waves at Number 16. Orlando is in the top 100 somewhere. The characters in Lighthouse seem like aliens to me. Society has changed a lot in the last 90 years. At one point...
  3. I have started reading To The Lighthouse, mostly...

    I have started reading To The Lighthouse, mostly because it is the only book in the top 10 of British novels, according to the BBC survey, that I have not read yet. I want the poseur points. I...
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    Yes, one or two Indian students discover how easy...

    Yes, one or two Indian students discover how easy it is to write a Python script to poo all over an internet forum. When I was out of work, I wrote a script to open up my Universal Credit account,...
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    I like the idea of Carmilla: pervy, lesbo vampire...

    I like the idea of Carmilla: pervy, lesbo vampire action posing as Victorian Literature.

    The Turn of the Screw is short, so is Daisy Miller. Not a fan of either myself.

    Have not read Notes...
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    His mother suggested Catcher in the Rye, but...

    His mother suggested Catcher in the Rye, but c'mon.
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    I thought this was a good example of Dumas's...

    I thought this was a good example of Dumas's style and wit:

    Albert bowed to Madame Danglars, and advanced towards Madame de Villefort, whose lips opened as he approached. "I wager anything," said...
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    Crash course in erudition

    I have a friend who has a grown up lad, who has asked her advice about reading some classics. This is slightly surprising, because up to now, he has mostly only been interested in sex and drugs. He...
  9. I know what you mean about the Booker. I have...

    I know what you mean about the Booker. I have read four winners:

    Hotel du Lac
    Oscar and Lucinda
    The Remains of the Day
    Amsterdam


    Hotel du Lac and Amsterdam are ok, but I wondered...
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    Chapter 68 explains what happened. Bertuccio...

    Chapter 68 explains what happened. Bertuccio bungled the job. So, it wasn't just a big plot hole.
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    The grandfather's name was M. Noirtier. I don't...

    The grandfather's name was M. Noirtier. I don't know why he does not have the same surname as his son, de Villefort.
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    Double post.

    Double post.
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    Haven't got to the suicides yet. In chapter 63...

    Haven't got to the suicides yet.

    In chapter 63 Bertuccio is mightily discombobulated because he recognises Mme Villefort, who he thought had been murdered, then recognises M. de Villefort, who he...
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    John Sutherland talks about Frankenstein's...

    John Sutherland talks about Frankenstein's monster too. He thinks Mary Shelley's experience of childbirth went into his description. For instance, the monster was yellow, as if he had jaundice....
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    Mr Hyde and the Uncanny Valley

    I read an essay in one of John Sutherland's books of puzzles in Victorian Literature about Mr Hyde's appearance. In films he is depicted as looking like a werewolf, but in the book he is described as...
  16. Tricky, no one stands out. I might go for Anthony...

    Tricky, no one stands out. I might go for Anthony Powell of the Dance to the Music of Time series. The only author I think of who was as good at making her characters speak consistently in their own...
  17. He did not actually say. He just wrote that the...

    He did not actually say. He just wrote that the teacher made such a thorough exposition of the book that he thought his pupils were lucky in their teacher.

    I read his essay on whether Alec...
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    I thought Monté Cristo sounded somewhat vampirish even before the characters started comparing him to one. Monté Cristo takes it in good part. There's a Comtess G_ who calls him Lord Ruthven. The...
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    I wonder whether repartée is the word I was looking for. It is difficult to say. It's not exactly wit; it's not exactly politeness. It is suavity, but that does not exactly cover it neither. I have...
  20. There were two things: 1) Prof. Sutherland...

    There were two things:

    1) Prof. Sutherland says Rochester was responsible for Bertha's death. He could have put her into one of the relatively humane asylums nearby, but he did not want her...
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    Courteous discourse

    I enjoy all the courteous language in this book. Aristocrats really were so gracious towards each other. The dialogue appears to be very well translated in my copy. I enjoyed reading the aristocrats...
  22. Regarding Miss Sharp, or it is Mrs Crawley? I...

    Regarding Miss Sharp, or it is Mrs Crawley? I cannot remember her exact marital status by the end of the book. A reader asked Thackery many years later whether she killed Jos, and Thackery replied...
  23. That one is not one of the best. The one I liked...

    That one is not one of the best. The one I liked most so far is why Joe and Biddy did not invite Pip to their wedding in Great Expectations, something I had wondered about. They could not afford any...
  24. Yes, Professor Sutherland does not think Becky...

    Yes, Professor Sutherland does not think Becky killed Jos. He thinks Thackeray was teasing his readers.
  25. John Sutherland's puzzles of Victorian literature

    Has anyone read those John Sutherland books on Victorian literature puzzles, 'Is Heathcliff a Murderer,' and the others? Since they seemed to have gone out of print, I bought three second hand. I...
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