Tuesday, June 28, 2011

17. Moll Flanders

Moll Flanders
Daniel Defoe

I am back!  It has been an extremely long time since I have updated this.  Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, it was more like two weeks.  Every summer, I reread my favorite series so I have not gotten to work on the list for awhile.  But now full steam ahead (until the next summer, of course).

Moll Flanders is a fictional, auto-biography about a woman who lives a "wicked" life.  Some of her exploits include incest, thievery, bigamy, prostitution, and abandoning all her children (she had like over ten!).  Of course, everything that she considered "wicked" is not in today's society.  For instance, Moll had sex before getting married a lot.  She considered this whoring while most people consider it a first date (just kidding)!

I have several grievances with this book that I just want to get out of the way right now.  First off, this novel is known as having a strong female character.  Moll is strong in her own way, I guess, but not in a cool, feminist way but more like in a "don't do this way."  It almost gives the impression that you cannot be an independent woman unless you are a horrible woman.  This novel also got a little repetitive sometimes.  Moll recounts like seven different thefts she pulled that really are the same regurgitated event.

Now to what I liked.  This novel is really interesting.  Moll herself is rather detached but you still find yourself rooting for her.  I have to hand it to Defoe, he is really good at stepping into other people's shoes.  You would think he would be less racist.

RATING: ***--

Interesting Facts:

I am going to be traveling for awhile.  I am taking the next book on the list with me.  I will also be taking The Count of Monte Cristo which is on the list but of course further along.  I will not be able to update for awhile but I will be reading!

There is an American movie adaptation of this novel but it takes a lot of liberties but I figure it cannot be that bad considering it has Morgan Freeman in it. Here is the trailer:

Monday, June 6, 2011

16. Love in Excess

Love in Excess
Eliza Haywood

First of all, I want to apologize for taking so long on this post.  I had a hard time finding this book and I ended up having to buy the textbook edition and it took like two weeks to get to my house.  I read some list books in between but I will not blog about those until we reach them chronologically.  So on with the book.

This novel is divided into three parts which were published at different times.  At first, I liked this novel.  It is written in a very Jane Austen-like style which I loved.  It also had a relatively interesting plot line.  Granted, it had a very big build up for an abrupt ending, but I still enjoyed the first part.  The second and third parts, however, were just ridiculous.

This book is about Count D'Elmont who has "fatal attractions" which pretty much means that you will fall in love with him whenever you first see him which hinders a lot of the characters, particularly his wife.  D'Elmont marries Alvoisa and then falls in love with another woman and they both whine about it for the rest of the book.  This novel opens you up to a world where no one cares about anything but looks, women are stupid and senistive, and people kill other human beings and don't give it another thought.  There is little to no characterization and everything is extremely over the top.  This is the kind of junk book you would read as a guilty pleasure.  In my opinion, it has no place in a list of classics.

RATING: **---

Interesting Facts:

My theory is that this is on the list because it was written by a woman.  The book is not exactly feminist and I have not enjoyed the female writers at all so far.  Way to represent, ladies...

This was one of the most popular books of its time along with Robinson Crusoe.

There are numerous references to both Metamorphoses and Oroonoko so you can feel really cool if you have been reading these books chronologically.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

An Announcement!

Just wanted to announce that I will be participated in two more 1001 blogs.  I will be blogging with my best friend, Brie, and tracking the 1001 Paintings and the 1001 Albums.  I think I have a clinical obsession with these books and should just embrace it.  Those blogs will be up and running shortly, and if you are interested, you can reach them by clicking the links under "My Other Blogs" section.  But if you are strictly in this for the books, I will be updating this blog with Love in Excess shortly.
Until then,