There’s a moment in Sunset Boulevard where William Holden’s character Joe Gillis takes Norma Desmond’s (played by Gloria Swanson) script in his hand. That’s what I was reminded of reading these two novellas.
All Book Reviews
Hargrave reads voraciously and diversely — mostly antiquarian and classic books in translation. These are her book reviews.
While she reads more books than she could possibly write about, she does consistently post weekly reviews. New reviews are posted on Mondays.
Looking for one of the books that have been reviewed? Want to find some vintage treasures of your own? Second-hand and used books are unique and eco-friendly, and can be found at your local independent bookseller. If you’re looking for an American bookseller, you can check here. UK booksellers can be found here.
If you’d prefer to buy books online, many vintage and rare editions can be found at ThriftBooks.
I’ve gleefully noticed that for the last two or three years there’s been an emphasis on the forgotten women writers of weird fiction. It soothes a sore spot in my child-self.
There’s nothing quite comparable to the experience of reading transcripts and re-printings of primary documents. To read a trial transcript from two hundred years ago and hear the echoes of words spoken so long ago by innocent women accused of crimes that are literally impossible to commit is something powerful and weighty.
Molière was a seventeenth-century playwright and I have seen readers approach him with a comparable trepidation to which I’ve seen when high school students approach Shakespeare for the first time.
When I saw Robert Graves’ They Hanged My Saintly Billy and realized that it was a novel about William Palmer case, I leapt at the chance to read it.
The novel uses its single sentence in a way that makes it an accessible and compelling read. It goes to show that it’s important to see beyond the quirks and give even the weirdest sounding books a chance.
I saw the Oxford World’s Classics French Decadent Tales sitting on my local independent bookstore’s shelf and I got so excited. French Decadence was a movement that did so much to further the form of the short story in general, but it also has all of those dark stories to tell at twilight that I can’t get enough of.
The Catcher in the Rye is much maligned. Accused of being misogynist, homophobic, and other horrible things, it’s a book that many people have a very strong opinion about one way or another.
I think it’s probably immediately obvious why this play is controversial. It’s a bold statement about the actions (or, more accurately, lack of action) of an institution that would rather forget everything around the time period.
The reader is treated to scenes, vignettes, lush descriptions of the landscape and the culture. Sit back and enjoy it. If you’re waiting for the plot to carry you, it just isn’t going to happen — and that’s not what Berlin Alexanderplatz is trying to accomplish.