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PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 11:53 pm
by Credo Buffa
Malia wrote: Frankly, that's the kind of thinking I normally have--but if I'm ever going to be able to afford living on my own while working part time and going full time to grad school (which I'll be doing in not so many months)--I'm going to have to curb my enthusiasm a little bit--whether I like it or not. :roll:

Ah, but books are the gift-to-self that keeps on giving! I'm with Despondence on this one.

As a matter of fact, I just had a conversation with a co-worker of mine today about book buying. She observed that I seem to have a different book every time she sees me (which is a gross exaggeration), and asked if I purchase most of the books that I read. In explaining my situation, I replied with the fact that 1) I never know at what point or how quickly I will get through any given book, so borrowing from libraries is just too much of a hassle, 2) I also like to write in margins and underline things, also a library no-no, and 3) I just like having books! Sure, I sometimes go to the used bookstore (particularly if what I'm looking for is hard to find or unusually expensive), and occassionally will sell back a book if I don't really feel the need to keep it in my collection or lend it out to others, but most of the time, I'm just continually adding to this imaginary library of two-story mahogany shelving and sliding ladders that I dream of having one day. :)

Of course I'm an impoverished recent college grad with only a temporary job at $11/hr., but that won't stop me! Of course, I might be singing a different tune once I'm living on my own and paying for my health insurance (if I'm lucky enough to be able to afford it), but how can you put a price tag on the endless joy of literature?

PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 12:53 am
by Discovery
I agree to the nth degree Credo! If I am a bit low on cash I tend to deny myself all other (I was going to say non-essentials!) things except books.

By the way, I saw a Morgan Spurlock documentary called 30 Days yesterday about him and his girlfriend trying to live for a month on the minimum wage. He had to go to the hospital to get an injured wrist looked at. They did an x-ray and put a bandage on - it cost him more than six hundred dollars! What a blessing the NHS is!

Anyway, I would really like a Rosewood or Walnut bookcase! (But only if they were old)
And I am currently reading Snow by Orhan Pamuk.

PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2006 5:50 am
by Credo Buffa
Nathaniel wrote:By the way, I saw a Morgan Spurlock documentary called 30 Days yesterday about him and his girlfriend trying to live for a month on the minimum wage. He had to go to the hospital to get an injured wrist looked at. They did an x-ray and put a bandage on - it cost him more than six hundred dollars! What a blessing the NHS is!

Oh, how glorious my one trip to the doctor was when I was living in Scotland; how simple and easy without having to deal with health insurance issues! Definitely the opposite of being back here at home and trying to get someone to insure you for a manageable monthly fee when you're in and out of work and have a laundry list of pre-existing, chronic conditions. . . absolute nightmare. :roll:

But that's OT for this thread, so I'll stop there with my gripes :P

Almost done with I Capture the Castle. . . off to the bookstore tomorrow to pick up something new!

PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 4:35 am
by Credo Buffa
Well, somewhere on this forum I read that Ian McEwan's Enduring Love had a Keats component to it, so now I'm reading that :wink: I've been wanting to read some of his work for awhile now, and this was the perfect opportunity.

What a dramatic opening! I'm only about 40 pages into it (maybe I shouldn't say "only" as it's not a terribly long book), and there's already a great, hazy, almost dark mood hanging over it. Glorious.

I also love this line: "Clarissa Mellon was also in love with another man, but with his two hundredth birthday coming up, he was little trouble." hee hee hee :wink:

PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 6:14 pm
by Discovery
Enduring Love was made into a film a couple of years ago, its worth seeing. The opening is perfect, just as dramatic as the book. Summer has rarely seemed so beautiful on screen either. The casting was perhaps slightly suspect (thought I may be being unfair), but it is enjoyable nontheless, especially the first twenty or so minutes.
Keats does get involved, I think Clarissa is an English Literature lecturer or something, but in the film she is a sculptor- a needless change but never mind!
I do enjoy McEwan. I especially liked 'Atonement' and would recommend it.

PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 11:06 pm
by Credo Buffa
Nathaniel wrote:Keats does get involved, I think Clarissa is an English Literature lecturer or something

Yes, she is. . . at the beginning she's just returned from sabatical work regarding research into Keats's letters. In the book, she theorizes that there could be some unsent letters from his last months still floating around out there somewhere. . . wouldn't that be exciting!

PostPosted: Sat Apr 08, 2006 12:33 am
by Discovery
Thanks Credo, I read Enduring Love before the name 'Keats' meant anything to me. Isn't it funny how you can miss things when you are not looking for them? If this makes sense!
I wonder why McEwan chose Keats. If I remember (and I don't want to spoil the book for anyone!) the debate, divide, or whatever between science and art is played out, in part, between husband and wife in the book. I think Keats is a good representative for the arts!
Anyway, nearly finished 'Snow'...

PostPosted: Sat Apr 08, 2006 10:44 am
by Saturn
I've started reading a biography of Cleopatra by Michael Grant.

I've just begun a voluntary position at my local museum so I have to brush up on my history a bit. :D

Keats and shelley

PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2006 8:36 am
by jamiano
Recently, while retouching upon Shelly's "Adonais", it occurred
to me that Shelley emblazens Keats as a romantic hero;yet a
wispy one:



"Like a pale flower by some some sad maiden cherished,
And fed with true-love tears, instead of dew;
Most musical of mourners, weep anew!"

Adonais





Keats' poesy is a pure sensation, as a tonic of nature.
After reading this verse, I recalled a verse from each poets' genuis ; upon the reflection of joy.



"And Joy, whose hand is ever at his lips"

Ode on Melancholy

John Keats



"Like an unbodied joy whose race is just begun."


Skylark

Percy Bysshe Shelley



Usage of the word "upon" is within my habitual recall of a happy childhood; "once upon a time.... ". {... or am I remembering the spirit of daydreams ...} Peace to everyone.
Thank you all for dear posts. Cheers to "Saturn", and Thilo for
the pursuit of the romantic ideal. :!: :wink: :!:

Jamiano

PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2006 12:09 pm
by Saturn
Thank you jamiano for your contribution 8)

PostPosted: Sat Apr 15, 2006 7:30 am
by Credo Buffa
Nathaniel wrote:I wonder why McEwan chose Keats. If I remember (and I don't want to spoil the book for anyone!) the debate, divide, or whatever between science and art is played out, in part, between husband and wife in the book. I think Keats is a good representative for the arts!

Well, now that I've finished the book, I've been pondering this same question. I think at the most basic level, Keats was convenient because he did represent the "art" side of the "art vs. science" debate, as you say (there is one point in the book that compares an article Joe is writing about scientific study into emotional responses, and Clarissa is getting on his case about it. . . it cites Keats's frustration over the scientific "unweaving of the rainbow", which basically represents Clarissa's point of view versus Joe's, which would follow Newton and the prism in this scenario).

Other than that, though, McEwan brings up Keats at two other places, both almost directly preceeding significant points in the plot. In the first situation, he is discussing Clarissa's work regarding Keats's letters in his last months, which is directly followed by the whole balloon accident. In the second situation, Clarissa is using the story of Keats first meeting Wordsworth as an example in a discussion of older generations patronizing the younger generations without realizing who it is that they're really patronizing until it's too late to do anything about it. This happens right before the "assassination attempt" in the restaurant.

I might be reaching for a connection, but love letters and the feeling of a younger man feeling patronized by an older man are pretty significant factors in Parry's character. I don't really think that McEwan would be trying to draw a parallel between Keats and Parry--the parallel between Keats and Clarissa makes a lot more sense--but just the fact that he seems to be focusing more on biographical details of Keats's life rather than his work seems to suggest something.

Anyway, off to the next big thing: T.H. White's The Once and Future King!

PostPosted: Mon Apr 17, 2006 11:08 pm
by Saturn
I'm about to start reading this again
Image
for the first time in 'donkey's ages' as they say where I come from :D

I need to seriously brush up on my Keatsiania

PostPosted: Tue May 02, 2006 8:21 pm
by Malia
Aside from mass amounts of Keats-related literature I've been reading lately (enough to have me dreaming "Keats" at least 3 nights a week! :lol: ), I've decided to go through my personal library and take a peek at books I bought for college courses and haven't opened for at least 10 years. (Gotta get some use out of 'em!) So, I'm currently reading Arthurian tales by Sir Thomas Mallory--famous 15th century writer of said tales :) I love Arthurian legend--my favorites being Sir Gawain and the Green Knight translated by Tolkien and a translation of the story of Sir Yvain the Knight with the Lion by Cretien de Troyes (sorry if I mutilate any of my words--as anyone can see by my posts, my spelling leaves much to be desired ;) ). Anyway, I'm just about done with Mallory's Sir Lancelot du Lake. It's written in the original 15th century English which is a bit of a trouble to read at first--but becomes easier after a little practice. It's a great story and I recommend Mallory to anyone who wants a good Arthurian adventure :)

I've also been re-reading all of my books by David Sedaris--famous modern (living) American comic writer. His stories are about as far away from Mallory as one can get! But I LOVE his work. It's edgy, self-depricating, and hillarious. I recommend him to anyone who likes off-beat humor.

PostPosted: Tue May 02, 2006 10:33 pm
by dks
aww, I love Arthurian Literature, Malia--so rich in allegory and ethereally evocative!

Alas, I always feel for poor Guinivere--I think in an odd way I understand her assignation with Lancelot--I mean, it would be tough to be married to King Arthur--the mainstay example of the Christian knight--saintly and just and good all the time--what else was there to do but for Guinivere to be bad? I know she's legendary in her betrayal, but I feel a tinge of sadness for her as she is the shadow queen--always in Arthur's, that is.

PostPosted: Tue May 02, 2006 11:15 pm
by Credo Buffa
Gawain and the Green Knight is one of my favorites too. Sir Gawain is my Arthurian knight crush :P

Oh, Mallory. I spent quite a lot of time with him last year. I was very fortunate to have a professor who is of a select group of English language scholars that is working at disecting 15th century dialect (have I talked about that here on this forum? I feel like I have :? ). Anyway, I did a small group presentation where we actually read (or rather "acted") some of the original text aloud in class. It's a very interesting time period in the language, because it was well on it's way from becoming Chaucer's Middle English to Shakespeare's Modern English, and all in a span of just about 150 years. Fascinating :D

I've heard a lot about Sedaris as well. Can you recommend a starting place for his work, Malia?