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review 2018-01-01 21:50
The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman
The Yellow Wallpaper - Charlotte Perkins Gilman,Elaine Hedges

"The Yellow Wallpaper" is one of the few things I read during my vacation that wasn't a graphic novel or manga. I downloaded it via Project Gutenberg. I think I saw a review of it on Booklikes, but I couldn't remember a thing about it. I wasn't even sure what genre it was and, since I didn't bother to look it up before getting started, I thought it might be a mystery. It's actually more psychological fiction (psychological horror?).

An unnamed woman stays at a fancy house with her physician husband and their baby. She's supposedly there for her health. Her husband says there's nothing physically wrong with her - she's suffering from hysteria/a nervous condition and must receive as little mental stimulation as possible. The woman feels she'd be better off elsewhere, but her husband insists that she stay in the horrid former nursery with torn yellow wallpaper and barred windows. The story takes the form of secret journal entries written by this woman,

as, from lack of anything else to do, she obsesses over the wallpaper and gradually goes mad. She begins to see creeping women everywhere, including behind the paper, and finally comes to believe that she is one of the creeping women as well.

(spoiler show)

I wasn't expecting this to be so unsettling. When I first started reading, I wondered whether the woman's husband had malicious intentions. The room was objectively awful, and the woman's request to spend a bit of time elsewhere didn't seem like a big deal. I think the husband probably did have good intentions, though. He just had terrible ideas about what might help his wife. I wonder if it finally dawned on him, too late, that he'd gone about everything all wrong?

I wondered whether the room was really an old nursery, or if it had once held someone else very much like the narrator. It was such a sinister place.

All in all, this was an excellent and quick read, and this is coming from someone who generally prefers novels over short stories.


(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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text 2016-09-04 02:51
Project Gutenberg Buddy Reads

Tentatively for an October launch, I've set up a group/bookclub (discussion room) and some reading lists to do possibly monthly buddy reads.  You don't have to join reading lists or the group in order to participate in any buddy reads of interest.


Suggest books and categories on either (or on any of these posts tagged "Project Gutenberg Buddy Reads").  Just because I put one book in the reading list doesn't mean that will be the buddy read book (just means I had to stick one in to create the list or that someone already suggested it).


Discussion Room is at http://booklikes.com/groups/show/710/project-gutenberg-buddy-reads 


Reading Lists are by category/genre (feel free to suggest others):


Classics - http://booklikes.com/apps/reading-lists/705/project-gutenberg-buddy-reads-classics 

Horror - http://booklikes.com/apps/reading-lists/706/project-gutenberg-buddy-reads-horror 

Mystery - http://booklikes.com/apps/reading-lists/707/project-gutenberg-buddy-reads-mystery 

Romance - http://booklikes.com/apps/reading-lists/709/project-gutenberg-buddy-reads-romance 

Science Fiction / Fantasy / Speculative Fiction - http://booklikes.com/apps/reading-lists/708/project-gutenberg-buddy-reads-sf-fantasy 

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text 2016-09-03 18:47
Hey, anyone interested in doing free monthly buddy reads?

This post, http://libromancersapprentice.booklikes.com/post/1461394/buddy-read-the-yellow-wallpaper , (from Libriomancer's Apprentice on a buddy read of The Yellow Wallpaper) reminded me about Project Gutenberg's free downloads that we could use to do some favorite genre buddy reads.  


Oh, who am I kidding.  I'm old enough that some books by favorite authors sitting on my TBR wishlist because hard to find are now available for free download from Project Gutenberg.


I was tentatively thinking maybe once a month starting October or November, interested readers could choose a book from there to buddy read.  Not everyone likes reading the same genre; I was thinking have multiple buddy read books chosen from a handful of popular categories (tentatively horror, literary classics, mystery, "other," romance, and SF/Fantasy but to be determined by whatever participants vote on).  No prizes, no big organization beyond a tag to find your buddy posts, just some buddy readalongs for the social aspect of it -- and the fun of exploring down the rabbit hole of Project Gutenberg offerings.


Any interest?  Any category/genre suggestions/preferences?  Any public domain book would be okay, not required to download from Project Gutenberg just that it be there (or at least eligible to be there and widely available free to readers).


Please feel free to reblog.

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review 2016-01-25 19:30
Headlong Hall by Thomas Love Peacock
Headlong Hall - Thomas Love Peacock


RE-VISIT 2016 via R4x HUZZAH!


Description: Winter, 1815: Harry Headlong, like all Welsh squires, is fond of shooting, hunting and drinking. But he becomes seized with a passion to form the acquaintance of philosophers and dilettanti.

Narrated by Sir Michael Hordern. Starring Daniel Massey as Escot, Ronald Lacey as Foster, John Grillo as Jenkison, John Horsley as Cranium and William Simons as Headlong.


Opening: The ambiguous light of a December morning, peeping through the windows of the Holyhead mail, dispelled the soft visions of the four insides, who had slept, or seemed to sleep, through the first seventy miles of the road, with as much comfort as may be supposed consistent with the jolting of the vehicle, and an occasional admonition to remember the coachman, thundered through the open door, accompanied by the gentle breath of Boreas, into the ears of the drowsy traveller.

What a long opening sentence that is, and look out for long words too:



Okay - I'm halfway through and can tell you that the foundation and corner stones of premise and plot are strong and funny. I love the name of Headlong ap Headlong and the waterforce reasons behind adopting it. Like Nightmare Abbey there is a meeting of unlike minds, opposing agendas and quaffables available in abundance. There are some outrageously funny moments and this should be a straight through pleasure but there is an underlying starkness and an awkwardness of prose that is jarring so if you have not yet encountered the satirical Peacock and are fancying a dive in then start with the skit on the Romantics that is Nightmare Abbey

CR Headlong Hall
4* Crotchet Castle
4* Nightmare Abbey
2* Maid Marian
TR Gryll Grange
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text 2015-06-25 07:51
nostalgic Thursday: remembering the Bobbsey Twins


are you "old" enough to recall Bert and Nan, who were 12 years old, and Flossie and Freddie, who were six? they were the two sets of fraternal twins born to Richard and Mary Bobbsey. today, many of the younger generation of readers are not even aware of them. 


the series was quite popular way back then and although a New Bobbsey Twins series came out in 1987 to 1992, the charm of the original books could never be matched. 


oldies and noobs, here are classic 15 Bobbsey Twins books by Laura Lee Hope from Project Gutenberg in epub and prc (works on Kindle) formats that you can read - either for the first time or all over again:


  1. The Bobbsey Twins
  2. The Bobbsey Twins on the Deep Blue Sea
  3. The Bobbsey Twins on Blueberry Island
  4. The Bobbsey Twins on a Houseboat
  5. The Bobbsey Twins in Washington
  6. The Bobbsey Twins in the Great West
  7. The Bobbsey Twins in the Country
  8. The Bobbsey Twins in a Great City
  9. The Bobbsey Twins at the Seashore
  10. The Bobbsey Twins at the Country Fair
  11. The Bobbsey Twins at Snow Lodge
  12. The Bobbsey Twins at School
  13. The Bobbsey Twins at Meadow Brook
  14. The Bobbsey Twins at Home
  15. The Bobbsey Twins at Cedar Camp


all files are available for download at 




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