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Search tags: e.m.-forster
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text 2018-04-06 19:11
Reading progress update: I've read 27%.
Howards End - Mary Gordon,E.M. Forster

Really enjoying this. 

 

I enjoy the writing. I can relate to Margaret, the elder of the two sisters.  Sometimes she makes impulsive decisions, reacting with emotion and then with a clearer head does a 180. When she's wrong she wants to fix it immediately. She's unpredictable. It makes for good reading.

 

Helen, the younger sister, is an idealist and grates on my nerves a bit. She seems to get lost in her own thoughts to the exclusion of good sense. Though I enjoyed the chapter about Beethoven's Fifth and how she read into the interpretation of the music.  Really shows the power music can have in determining your mood.

 

All this talk about England and the Continent is really interesting when you realize this book was written in 1910, four years before The Great War. 

 

I always find it interesting when men write female characters because I am female  - whether or not it will feel authentic. I don't know if male readers have the same thoughts when a female writes male characters or writes from their point of view. Right now I find it authentic. There was a point where Mrs. Wilcox asks Margaret whether or not she forgets she's a girl and I couldn't decide if this was done for a plot point or so you forgive Foster if you don't find it to be authentic...or both. 

 

Just my ramblings as I read this. 

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text 2018-04-04 17:18
Reading progress update: I've read 3%.
Howards End - Mary Gordon,E.M. Forster

Reading in preparation for the mini-series.

 

I remember seeing the movie years ago but don't remember too many details. I never read the book.

 

The beginning had me hooked.  It opens with Margaret receiving a letter from her sister saying she is in love. Margaret wants to run to her sister to find out what is going on being they don't know the family or the young man that well but, alas, their brother is sick. So their Aunt offers to go,  offering to make inquiries and well... meddle. She says she isn't. But she reads like she will.  Margaret puts the Aunt on a train after making her promise to behave and then is handed this telegram from her sister:

 

"All over.  Wish I had never written. Tell no one."

 

And I thought, "Nononononoooooooooooooooooo!!!"  But the Aunt is gone. 

 

*Chapter ends*

 

 

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review 2018-03-14 21:34
Reading the Ceiling by Dayo Forster
Reading the Ceiling - Dayo Forster

I agree with the other reviews that this is a fine option if you are doing a world books challenge and need a book from the Gambia – this is why I read it, and it’s certainly readable – but there isn’t much to recommend it beyond that.

 

Reading the Ceiling has an interesting premise: the narrator, Ayodele, is turning 18 and determined to get initiated into the mysteries of sex, so she needs to choose a partner with whom to do the deed. The three sections of the book follow alternate versions of her life as it unfolds along three different trajectories depending on whom she chooses: Reuben, an awkward classmate who likes her much more than she likes him; Yuan, a friend of Chinese descent in whom she is interested; or Frederick, the sexually experienced father of her best friend.

 

I was curious to see how the different stories played out, and there is a sense of place, though oddly for African fiction, Ayodele lives a middle-class life in terms of both values and material comforts, and there’s not much of a sense that she and her classmates are better off than those around them. Tracking the similarities and differences among the stories and the different ways characters relate to each other based on different lives and choices was interesting, and the author does a good job of showing different sides of those events that occur in multiple stories, avoiding repetitive content. I didn’t always believe the author’s choices, though: a character will die in a motorcycle accident in multiple stories despite having lived two different adult lives, or Ayodele will get a scholarship for London in one story but only for Dakar in another even though she submitted the applications before making her choice.

 

More to the point, though, the book is on the dull side. Ayodele’s feelings about events are often left unclear; instead we get bland descriptions of her surroundings, lacking in emotional content. And she’s not a particularly interesting character or one who inspired much emotion in me. While a character doesn’t need to be pleasant to be compelling, Ayodele doesn’t balance her lack of resilience or less-than-admirable choices with a strong or complex personality to keep readers engaged. In two of the stories she folds emotionally at the first blow, allowing an early failure or tragedy to shape and define her life, while in the final one she chooses to carry an unexpected pregnancy to term, though it derails her life, apparently just to spite her mother. She doesn’t seem destined to be happy regardless of her choices, though it’s hard to tell when the last two end without reaching a conclusion, leaving readers wondering what happens next.

 

Overall, this isn’t one I would recommend, though if you too have reason to read a book from the Gambia, then go for it. I’ve certainly read worse.

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review 2017-12-16 00:00
A Room with a View
A Room with a View - E.M. Forster Meh... I had a tough time convincing myself to finish this book. It was ok, but seemed rather vapid, or something. I'm not even sure I can summarize it.

So we have a young woman, Lucy Honeychurch, who is vapid, but who grows less so over the course of the book. She is supposed to marry Cecil Vyse, but doesn't really love him, and besides, he's pretty vapid. So she ends up with George Emerson, whom she might love, only he once made improper advances toward her in Italy. But his father, who is extremely weird, convinces her to set that aside. Something like that.

I had a hard time forcing myself to finish this book. It definitely deserves a minus (-) appended to the 3*s. I thought Forster was supposed to be a good author, and I vaguely remember having read A Passage to India in college, and thinking it was ok. But after this example, I'm not sure I'll dabble with him again.
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text 2017-07-31 22:36
Booklikes-Opoly - BrokenTune's Final Game Wrap Up
Making History - Stephen Fry
The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt's New World - Andrea Wulf
A Single Man - Christopher Isherwood
Die So Geliebte. Roman Um Annemarie Schwarzenbach - Melania G. Mazzucco
The Thorn Birds - Colleen McCullough
Howards End - E.M. Forster
Dry Store Room No. 1: The Secret Life of the Natural History Museum - Richard Fortey
Journey to the Center of the Earth: A Signature Performance by Tim Curry - Jules Verne
The Day Of The Jackal - Frederick Forsyth
Around the World in Eighty Days - Jules Verne, Brian W. Aldiss,Michael Glencross

July 31st:

 

Bank account: $215

 

Many thanks to Obsidian Blue and Moonlight reader for hosting this game. It was so much fun! Both playing and watching everyone else's updates - a special shout out to Magnetic Monkey and Penni, who have been quite the entertaining duo.

 

My personal goal for this game was to tackle my TBR shelves, both physical and electronic, and try and read as many books that I already own as I could. 

 

In that, I think it has been a resounding success. I managed to read 

 

40 books. Which added up to an amazing 12205 pages! And I loved many of them. Even ones that were outside of my normal reading comfort zone - Hello Sci-fi! and time travel. 

 

In fact, I managed to re-connect with one of my favourite childhood authors - Jules Verne. Not that Verne is a children's author. I just happen to have had my first encounter with Verne when I was a child. Now I want to read more of his works. They are just amazing!

 

Overall, not all of the books I have read over the game have been impressive. There have been 3 DNFs, and all the books together averaged a 3.36 rating.

 

However, there were some honourable mentions which I have linked above.

 

The Thorn Birds, Howards End, and Journey to the Centre of the Earth were re-reads, so the most surprising or best discoveries of the last three months have been Making History by Stephen Fry and The Invention of Nature by Andrea Wulff.

 

Again, many thanks to OB and MR and to all the other BLikers who have taken part or cheered from the sidelines. You all rock!

 

 

Below (after the page break) are all my game updates.

 

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