“Tell me what you read and I’ll tell you who you are” is true enough, but I’d know you better if you told me what you reread.
* indicates re-reads
Monica Dickens. Mariana (1940).
Lucy Maud Montgomery:
The Blue Castle (1926).*
Pat of Silver Bush (1933).*
Mistress Pat (1935).*
Emily of New Moon (1923).*
Emily Climbs (1925).*
Emily’s Quest (1927).*
Eleanor H. Porter. The Miss Billy Trilogy (1911, 1912, 1914). Extremely moralizing and a little too Pollyanna-ish, even for the author of Pollyanna.
J. K. Rowling:
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (1997).*
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (1998).*
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (1999).*
Dodie Smith. The Town in Bloom (1965). A woman looks back with satisfaction on an empty life shaped by the year she spent as an aspiring actress in her teens (and the bad choices she and her friends made therein). Disappointing from the author of the wonderful I Capture the Castle.
Daddy Long Legs (1912). Really liked this, wholesome and sweet.
Dear Enemy (1915). A product of her time regarding ideas about heredity and those with mental problems. Otherwise lovely and great for young girls.
Rob Shelsky. Lucia’s Crusades (2010). Neither a good imitation-sequel nor good writing.
Tom Holt. Lucia in Wartime (1985). As a sequel to Lucia, it falls flat, but less flat than other attempts.
E. F. Benson. The Complete Lucia Victrix (1920-1939).* AGAIN. It was comfort food.
John Buchan. The Gap in the Curtain (1932).
Evelyn Waugh. Brideshead Revisited (1945). A “fierce little human tragedy . . . ” (331).
Sybil G. Brinton. Old Friends and New Fancies (2007, reprint from 1914).
The Moonspinners (1962).*
My Brother Michael (1960).*
Elizabeth Anna Hart. The Runaway (1872).
E. F. Benson. Paying Guests (1929).
Stella Gibbons. White Sand and Grey Sand (1958).
Rachel Ferguson. The Brontes Went to Woolworths (1931).
An Infamous Army (1937).*
The Unknown Ajax (1959).*
The Reluctant Widow (1946).*
Margaret Mayhew. The Other Side of Paradise (2009). The fate of an English debutante of Singapore captured by the Japanese during WWII. Do not recommend.
E. F. Benson. Miss Mapp (1922).*
Jane Austen (& Merryn Williams). The Watsons (2005).
Daphne DuMaurier. Frenchman’s Creek (1941). I really hated this book.
Elizabeth Gaskell. The Moorland Cottage (1850).
Frances Hodgson Burnett. The Making of a Marchioness (1901).
E. F. Benson. Dodo: A Detail of the Day (1893).
E. F. Benson:
Queen Lucia (1920).*
Lucia in London (1927).*
Mapp and Lucia (1931).*
Lucia’s Progress (1935).*
Trouble For Lucia (1939).*
George and Weedon Grossmith. The Diary of a Nobody (1892).
J. K. Rowling: The Harry Potter Heptalogy:
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (2007).
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2005).
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2003).
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2000).
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (1999).
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (1998).
Harry Potter and the Philospher’s Stone (1997).
Kathryn Stockett. The Help (2009).
Benson, E. F. House of Defense (1906).
Surprising for the creator of Mapp and Lucia: a melodramatic novel touting Christian Science.
Gaskell, Elizabeth. Cranford (1848).* Just as good the third time.
Yann Martel. Life of Pi (2002).
Mary Stewart. Rose Cottage (1997).*
A Glass of Blessings (1958).
Excellent Women (1952).
Some Tame Gazelle (1950).
F. Scott Fitzgerald. The Great Gatsby (1925).*
Jane Austen. Northanger Abbey (1817).*
Marilynne Robinson. Home (2008)
This book was not easy to read. It left me with a lump in my throat and a bowling ball in my stomach. But it did not change my opinion that Marilynne Robinson is no doubt the greatest living American novelist.
E. F. Benson. Trouble for Lucia (1939).*
Daphne Du Maurier. My Cousin Rachel (1951).
Frances Towers. Tea With Mr. Rochester (1949).
Stella Gibbons. Cold Comfort Farm (1932).
Thrush Green (1959).
Winter in Thrush Green (1961).
News from Thrush Green (1970).
The Custom of the Country (1913).
The Age of Innocence (1920).
P. G. Wodehouse:
Much Obliged, Jeeves (1971).*
Jeeves and the Feudal Spirit (1954).*
After reading Wharton I was in the mood for a little classic English farce, at which Pelham Grenville Wodehouse is past master, utterly untouchable and consistently hilarious. My favorites among his substantial body of work are the stories about Bertram Wooster and his “inimitable Jeeves.”
Edith Wharton. The House of Mirth (1905).
Nightingale Wood (1938).
The Bachelor (1948).
George Eliot. Middlemarch (1874).
Mansfield Park (1814).*
Am almost embarrassed to admit that I read these two AGAIN. My only excuse must be that the libraries were closed over the holidays.
Ada Leverson. Love’s Shadow (1908).
Frank Baker, Miss Hargreaves (1940).