Wide Sargasso Sea is a postcolonial parallel novel by Jean Rhys a Dominican born author. The novel is a prequel to Charlotte Bronte’s 1847 novel Jane Eyre. It is the story of Antoinette Cosway known as Bertha Mason in Jane Eyre, a white Creole heiress, from the time of her youth in the Caribbean to her unhappy marriage with Mr Rochester and relocation to England. Jean when was sixteen came to England and struggled into few demimonde jobs like a chorus girl, mannequin, artist’s model. She began to write in her thirties and was encouraged by Ford Madox Ford, who also discovered D. H. Lawrence. Her first book was a collection of short stories called The Left Bank in which Ford Madox wrote an introduction in 1927. With the outbreak of World War II in 1939, she went out completely out of sight. One reason was her recent failure of Good Morning, Midnight and another was her books went out of print. The reason of being unsuccessful was her books were all ahead of their time in theme and tone. In 1966, she made a reappearance with Wide Sargasso Sea which won the Royal Society of Literature Award and W. H. Smith Award for the particular year. It turned out it was her last novel and she died in the year of 1979.
I am looking forward to it. I got it from my college library and the book is now considered as a modern classic.
The other book I am reading is The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort. Soon to be a movie in the current year, directed by Martin Scorsese starring Leonardo Di Caprio. Jordan Belfort, former kingpin of the notorious investment firm Stratton Oakmont, became one of the most infamous names in American finance: a brilliant, conniving stock-chopper who led his merry mob on a wild ride out of the canyons of Wall Street and into a massive office on Long Island. Now, in this astounding and hilarious tell-all autobiography, Belfort narrates a story of greed, power, and excess no one could invent.
The Sea and the SILENCE
by PETER CUNNINGHAM
The Sea and the Silence is a beautifully written historical fiction by Peter Cunningham. It is one of those books that you don’t appreciate the craftsman until you read it. I got an ebook format of it, a few weeks back on my Kindle application from Amazon.
This historical novel set in Ireland, spanning the years from WWII to the 1960s, the story is chiefly about Iz, the daughter of a cash-poor but land-rich Anglo-Irish aristocrat during a time when the IRA was “taking back” Ireland.
The novel is broken into two parts, the first entitled ‘Hector’ and it encompasses the years of Iz’s marriage. There’s not too much Irish history in this part, rather it is a portrait of Iz as a wife and her struggle. The reader must have patience because when the second part, called “Iz” comes along, everything falls into place. The pace picks up dramatically, as if the author spent the first part of the book taking you slowly to the very top of a roller coaster. The resulting rush of plot, drama, Irish history and politics is an experience to read.
The novel is written cleverly as is the title. Cunningham’s book (translated into French as La Mer Et La Silence) was awarded the Prix de L’Europe in 2013. This novel was also shortlisted for the Prix des Lecteurs du Telégramme and the Prix Caillou.
The storyline of the book is interesting and because of the appreciable writing, I would say it will touch your head and might touch your heart. When I began this book, I wasn’t quite sure what to make of it. But when I was halfway through, I knew I had to finish it for the sake of being a good reader. It is an epic love story set under the dignity of Anglo-Irish class.
A CLASH OF KINGS
by George R. R. Martin
As I read George R. R. Martin more I fall in love with his essence of writing more. I finished A Clash of Kings in four day reading. A Song of Ice and Fire which is an ongoing series. I believe, this series is one of the deepest realms since Tolkien, with a mythology, culture, and history. When you’re reading Martin’s books, you feel you want to quit your job and everything in life, just to be at one place and read all day.
I certainly enjoyed the first book, A Game of Thrones more than the second one. The pace of the book is as usual but the plotting suffers. This book really feels like the second of a series of books, which means it’s mostly setting up events that will come around in the next installments. Also it lacked a bit of action that was expected after reading the first book or as the title suggests. I have a mixed – bag feeling towards this one. I also felt, once the plot will take you to the point of full excitement and something big to happen, but when you turn the next page it was just a pit of disappointment. I won’t be highlighting the events as they would be spoiled.
Daenerys Targaryen, which I liked one of the most in the first book, was quite a drag-on in this one. But even though the drag-on is written a spirit of future excitement.
The shifting of the focus back and forth between the characters and the group of characters is again at its best. No one can write better I feel. The length of this book is more than the first, but because of its pace, it can be overlooked.
I’ll still recommend this book. The setting up of events creates more excitement for the next book. The quality of writing has been maintained by Martin and I think that is enough to read this one.
A FEAST FOR CROWS and A DANCE WITH DRAGONS by George R. R. Martin
A Clash of Kings by George R. R. Martin