Although To the Lighthouse is told in a similar stream-of-consciousness manner as was Mrs. Dalloway (reviewed two weeks ago), it struck me as different, and I’m not sure why. Was there more plot? Maybe. Was it the setting (the Hebrides versus London)? Maybe. I do know that as I read, I was less emotionally drawn in to the characters, and I found myself disliking all of them (yes, all of them). As I read the thoughts of each character, I found it to be incredibly realistic. I was in awe, once again of Woolf’s ability to capture the mental process of such a variety of fictional people. The fact that I didn’t like any of the people once I could listen in on their thoughts was telling: I suspect most of us wouldn’t get along very well if we could read each others’ thoughts!
Although I’m glad I read To the Lighthouse, I can’t say I’ll ever revisit it. I am looking forward to reading others’ posts today, though, because as with the other Woolf novel I read, I think I missed a lot! This post is a rambling collection of my thoughts about the book, and if you’ve also read the novel, I’d love to hear your thoughts too. What did I miss?
Because I read this book as a part of the Woolf in Winter read-along (hosted at Emily’s blog today), this post and the comments may include spoilers as a part of the discussion of the book. Continue Reading