So, if you read this blog at all, you’ll know that I have the resolution of reading at least one classic a month. Some months, I expect I’ll read more.
This is not that month.
The Way We Live Now is LONG, plus I’ve been listening to the audiobook version. It seems like forever. Don’t let that turn you away, so far, I love it. But, The Way We Live Now doesn’t have the lighter-hearted charm of the Barchester Chronicles. I haven’t finished it yet, so the review is yet to come, but Trollope is magical with building a story.
I first learned about Trollope in my Victorian Lit class at WSU -Vancouver. I LOVED that class, but I didn’t finish the book we were reading then. (Barchester Towers) There was simply no way for me to go to school full-time and work full-time. So, I read the ones I wrote papers on and as much as I could of the others. Barchester Towers at a 400 text-dense pages was simply too much at the time. I promised myself, however, I’d read it later–when I was done with school. And I did. (I’m still working on the promise to myself to read the rest–because I’ve never been able to plow through Wuthering Heights.)
Anyhoo, I started with the first book in the series, The Warden. I’ve since read Barchester Towers (awesome!) and Doctor Thorne (maybe better). Part of my book resolution is to finish the Barchester Chronicles this year.
Anthony Trollope isn’t like modern writers. His stories are full of characters, interjections from the narrator, and intensely woven. They don’t start with action; they roll along, and the intensity of the story comes with knowing the characters and seeing them interact with their little jabs and fun. When you finally know the characters and their wants well, the narrator brings them together, and the fun is seeing their entanglements resolve or explode.
I wanted to take a little time to tell you about good ole’ Trollope.
But I’ve already been blathering for a while. So, I’ll tell you a few things I find super interesting.
*He was a contemporary of Charles Dickens.
*In Victorian Lit, I some writers got paid by the word. Perhaps this is why his books are so flippin’ long. Long or not, they’re lovely.
*He wrote according to a “quota” which he satisfied each day before his full-time job at the post office.
*He wrote forty-seven novels. 47!!!
*He had many children, and he was one of those unfortunates born to those with good social standing but without the funds to back up the life-style.
*He preferred the fat advance to getting royalties later.
*****And for me, maybe most important of all, he is (so-far) my favorite classics writer outside of wonderful, fantastic, Jane Austen and the beloved Charlotte Bronte. I love Barchester Towers and Doctor Thorne so much. He’s one of the authors that make me happy he was prolific. He will feed my book addiction for quite some time. Yay!
~Merry Christmas, Amanda