Romantic Era

Romanticism is a movement that covers many works from roughly 1790 to 1840. It includes the Sturm und Drang movement in Germany and notable historical events such as the French Revolution. Romantic works are often most closely associated with poetry, but they do include some novels and plays as well.

This style focused on ‘romantic’ ideas — expressing feeling and emotions rather than strict adherence to realism. The writing is entrenched in personal emotion and experience, and often focuses on creating an emotional effect.

Contrary to what the name may imply, these works are rarely romance genre fiction. Some of the precursors to the modern genre can be found here, however.

Famous Romantic authors include Goethe, Melville, Dickinson, Austen, Poe, Hawthorne, Walter Scott, Mary Shelley, and the Brontës.

This time is part of the 19th Century.

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The Wild Ass’s Skin

Romantic Era

Balzac’s sits nearly at the end of main street, and when you sit inside of it, it’s easy to forget that you exist in the modern world. The tin ceiling design and the white marble of the counters as well as the café set up are a comforting beckon to the past and the distant, and it was sitting at one of those counters by the window that I thought about starting a book review blog in the first place. This is a review of Honoré de Balzac’s The Wild Ass’s Skin (La Peau de Chagrin).

Pride and Prejudice

Romantic Era

I’ve been reading classic literature since I was very young, but the work of Austen was a blind spot for me. Mostly, that had to do with the way acquaintances pushed me to read them. Bright. Sparkly. Light. Romantic. Those are not the words that draw me to literature. They also weren’t the entire picture of either the novels or the author. This is a review of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.

Eugene Onegin

Romantic Era

Live-streamed opera is where we first saw Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin, which is based on the Pushkin novel. Even though we weren’t provided with subtitles to the Met’s production from 2007, the imagery and the music were capable of conveying the story in and of themselves. Whenever I see fall leaves in piles on the ground, I’m reminded of the set design. This is a review of Pushkin’s Eugene Onegin.

The Queen of Spades

Romantic Era

The premise might be an old one, but what Pushkin does with it is worthy of praise. His writing flows with a concise clarity that is poetic in and of itself.

The Queen of Spades is a novella that is not too short and not too long. It’s a perfect short read for an afternoon or an evening, clocking in at approximately 82 pages including the prologue. The clarity of the prose and the flow of it make the reader nearly fly through it and want to finish it in one sitting if at all possible. This is a review of A. S. Pushkin’s The Queen of Spades.