Sunday Salon: Southern Vamps, Hamlet, and Dickens

Well, this has proved to a fruitful reading weekend. Since Friday night, I’ve read books four to eight of the Sookie Stackhouse (Southern Vampire) Series by Charlaine Harris. I have not read the first three (and was spoiled by a friend) yet, but I will get back to rereading the series. They are quick reads, and I, like many others were attracted to the series by the HBO TV adaptation of it “True Blood”. The series is addictive (hence the reading four novels in less than 48 hours). I can not help compare it to the Stephenie Meyer Twilight series, and the Souhern Vampire series is advantaged in its older themes, but it is a better series all around, no doubt about it. The characterisation is well thought, the plots intriguing, the tone both humorous and dark. I can not wait until the book nine comes out in May.

As I said last week, I have begun rereading Hamlet slowly. I’m still in Act One, taking my merry time on bus rides and whenever I find myself free. This is probably my second rereading of the play. I do like Shakespeare (especially the sonnets); I like being able to read it aloud and hearing the iambic pentameter. I have read more tragedies than comedies though, but I do think Hamlet ranks highly among the ones I’ve read because it has some beautiful soliloquies. I dislike or am indifferent to all the characters except Horatio (only because he seems to be the most decent guy of the bunch). I do like the construction of the play, the use of the Mousetrap and the meta play within the play. Reading has made me more excited that I will be seeing it in a month on stage, and it will be a serious performance by the RSC. Of course, this was why I bought the book in the first place. More observations of the play as I continue to reread it. In the mean time, I bought my a few more books this week.

Project 259/365 - Dickens Book Haul

I did indeed buy A Christmas Carol and other Christmas stories by Charles Dickens. I really need to read up on some Dickens especially considering how English his works are. It’s debatable if I will actually read all these books. Little Dorrit was just adapted on BBC. I bought The Old Curiosity Shop simply because I actually pass buy it weekly when I’m in Holborn; the building looks the same more or less. I much prefer Penguin, Oxford or Everyman classics to Wordsworth, but each of these was only £1.75 eac at Lovejoys on Charring Cross Road. As much as I wanted to go for the 3 for 2 fiction deal at Borders, my frugality won out in the end. But with prices like that, I can get a few more classics there and save up for contemporary books later.

Next week, I will have reread more of Hamlet and maybe go past the first page of Year of Wonders. I want to start A Christmas Carol soon, but I’m starting to think I can wait a few more weeks before starting to. I want to read a lot of it on Christmas Eve to get in the real mood.

Have a good week!

Literary Links

FictionalCities – Recs of books set in Florence, Venice, Berlin, and London.

The New York Times 100 Most Notable Books of 2008 is out.

Schmoop is a new literature student guide. I read the Pride & Prejudice guide, and I liked the informal style of describing the books themes and characters. It made me really want to reread P&P (not that it is difficult to want to reread P&P).

3 comments

  1. Memory says:

    Hamlet is one of my favourites, too. When I first read it in high school, I didn’t care for it at all. My teacher stretched it out over two months, and that was just too long. It took all the tension out of it. When I reread it a couple of years later, in university, I thought much better of it. We read it quickly enough that the tension remained, and our discussions went much deeper.

    Enjoy the performance!

  2. Yvonne says:

    I’ve only read the first Sookie Sookhouse book, but I have the others in my TBR. I did watch “True Blood” and enjoyed the series. I’m looking forward to its return next year.

    Happy Sunday!

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