Sleepwalking Land by Mia Couto1 blends two stories of seeking for one’s identity in the midst of war-torn Mozambique. In the first, an old man and a young orphaned boy have fled a refugee camp and seek shelter in a burned-out bus on the side of the road. Near a corpse, they find a set

Read Post

Maggie Tulliver is a quick-witted child, one with appalling manners for her strict Victorian house and community. She cannot seem to be a proper young lady. When the novel opens, she is about nine years old, and I couldn’t help adoring her childish antics, especially as she regularly brought disappointment to her mother and aunts

Read Post

It is not often that I finish a book and feel nothing positive. I tend to like most of what I read, and even if I don’t like it, I try to find something that sheds light on life in some way. I struggle now to think of what I could possibly find redeeming in

Read Post

I loved George Eliot’s Middlemarch (published 1874; thoughts), despite its 800 pages. I can’t say the same about Eliot’s Silas Marner (published 1861), despite its comparative brevity. Now, if you have been reading my blog in the past, you will know that I tend to read classics and I normally love them, especially Victorian novels.

Read Post

This month’s Classics Circuit features Meiji-era Japanese literature! I chose to read some short stories by Higuchi Ichiyō , the most well-known woman writer in Meiji Japan. In the Shade of Spring Leaves, by Robert Lyons Danly, is part biography of Ms Ichiyō and part a collection of nine of her short stories. I decided

Read Post

I believe it is possible to be very glad I read a book and yet still not really like it. I read not just for entertainment but for broader perspective. Reading Balzac certainly gave me a different perspective. In a sense, it’s kind of a mix between Dumas (humorous exaggeration) and Zola (heart-breaking realism). Honoré

Read Post