Tiny Stories, Tiny Tales

The Brontes Rise Again

Dear Fellowette alerted me (and everyone!) to this fun challenge going on over Laura’s Review. And can I resist a Bronte Challenge? I think not. Can you?

The idea is to pick a bunch of Bronte books, written by them or about them and then naturally, write a review.  Or you can watch some movies and write a review about that.

So here’s my list:

“Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Bronte. I haven’t written this since I was thirteen or so! for shame.

“Agnes Grey” by Anne Bronte. I wrote a paper awhile ago on Anne’s pleasure and escape from a difficult life in writing religious poetry and I remember really enjoying this particular novel (which I believe has some of that poetry) though I can’t remember a thing about the plot or characters. Again, for shame!

“Tales of Angria” by Charlotte Bronte. Which I have somewhere…

“The Life of Charlotte Bronte” by Elizabeth Gaskell. Long been on my list of things to read!

“The Infernal World of Branwell Bronte” by Daphne DuMaurier.  The title says it all, I believe.

“The Brontes Went to Woolsworth” by Rachel Ferguson. Kinda cheating since I read this last year but it’s oh so imaginative and believable. A rare combo in my book. I also want to puzzle over more what exactly happened near the end…

I think I’ll pull up here. More may happen, maybe less but this is the Bronte bedrock.

Comments (1):

  1. Laura's Reviews

    January 13, 2010 at 5:15 pm

    Great list! Thank-you for joining the challenge and I look forward to reading all of your reviews!

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Life Lessons from a Cardinal

Outdoor living is coming in fits and starts now that it’s June. Last week it was in the 90’s (30C) and today it is gentle and cool with thunderstorms passing by north and south, bringing coolness in the wake of their stormy skirts. The sun shines but the thunder rumbles nearby and my cats retreat farther indoors to snooze on chairs instead of near windows.

It is tempting to join them. The heat break means that deep good sleep is possible again. Even with air conditioning, I sleep poorly when it’s hot. I sleep best when it rains.

And it has been raining at night but in great torrid thunderstorms where the house shakes and the windows rattle. Sometimes I lie in bed as the thunderstorms march by and wonder at the fate of all the creatures and people living outside.

It is summer and I have no arguments with it. It’s too hard to argue with the seasons. On the beautiful days, I sip my breakfast tea outdoors and watch the birds and squirrels to start my day. There’s always a drama playing out in the backyard. My favorite is the cardinal who walks along the deck rail, casting his bright black eye here and there and then breaks into song until a robin kicks him out. When the coast is clear, he returns and does the same thing all over again. Despite my nearness, he doesn’t mind me at all and I adore his bright red plumage and courageous laughing heart. His song cheers my soul and I’ve come to recognize his particular song. It falls under the same lines as all cardinals but it has a bit of improvised trill at the end. I think he’s been hanging out with song sparrows and got Ideas.

He’s a hard individual to photograph (all flash and movement) but I’ve shared a photo of a cardinal from National Geographic so you can get the idea. He’s hard to ignore and is a permanent on the robins’ blacklist. I aspire to such a level of happy insouciance.

How to Get Through a Big Book

How to get through a Big Book and have a little fun too.

  1. Make and eat food mentioned in the book (big books always include food, usually in meticulous detail).
  2. Read a little bit each day.
  3. Make a soundtrack.
  4. Dress like a character from the book for a day. Or a week. Or a month if it really grabs you.
  5. Ten minutes to kill? Daydream about the landscape or what the characters are seeing as they move through their day.
  6. Read passages you enjoy out loud. If you’re in the right mood, record yourself reading passages and share it (Instagram is great for this). Include illustrations if you like (thank you, Shirin).
  7. Whip out a highlighter or some sticky tabs for those great parts.
  8. Pace yourself and remember, reading gigantic books isn’t a race. It’s about the journey. Might as well bring along snacks, good drinks, great lighting, and enjoy the ride.