Tag Archives: classics

Florence & Giles by John Harding

DATE FINISHED: April 30th, 2011

RATED: *** (3.5)

SYNOPSIS:  In a gothic mansion, Florence and her younger brother Giles are in the ‘care’ of their absentee uncle. The uncle has forbidden his niece from learning to read (and education of any kind), but she has secretly defied him and spends every available moment devouring the contents of the library. When Giles is returned home from boarding school, a governess enters Blithe House – soon to be followed by a second governess, after the first suffers a tragic accident. Florence is convinced that Blithe is now haunted, and that Miss Taylor harbours the spirit of her predecessor.  Florence is also determined to foil Miss Taylor’s plans to steal her brother away…

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Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones

DATE FINISHED: March 26th, 2011

RATED: **

SYNOPSIS: The only white man on the island of Bougainville becomes teacher to the local children while a civil war impacts on the lives around them.  Mr. Watts introduces the children to Mister Dickens through the adventures of Pip in Great Expectations, but as the narrator, 13 year old Matilda, comes to consider Pip a personal friend, she inadvertently draws unwanted and dangerous attention to their little village.

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The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde

DATE FINISHED: March 17th, 2011

RATED: *** (3.5)

SYNOPSIS: Thursday Next is a LiteraTec (Literary Detective) working in Swindon after a botched attempt to close in on old nemesis Acheron Hades.  When Thursday’s uncle invents a machine that can transport people into the pages of a book, it becomes an issue of national security, and it is up to Thursday to rescue her aunt from being lost forever within Wordsworth’s daffodils, not to mention restoring Jane Eyre to her rightful place within the pages of her own story.  Oh, and there’s a love story thrown in for good measure.

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White Stone Day by John MacLachlan Gray

DATE FINISHED: March 15th, 2011

RATED: **** (4.5)

SYNOPSIS: In Oxford, a young reverend finds amusement in entertaining his colleagues daughters with riddles, stories and photography. In London, a literally down at heel journalist finds himself investigating a séance only to receive an unexpected message from his deceased brother, followed by finding himself falsely imprisoned for a murder he did not commit. These disparate & seemingly unconnected storylines intertwine into a compelling period mystery.

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Jack Maggs by Peter Carey

DATE FINISHED: March 13th, 2011

RATED: **** 

SYNOPSIS: Jack Maggs arrives in London seeking out Henry Phipps, a gentleman who it turns out has recently departed his last known address. Maggs bides his time in the role of footman next door until he can meet his quarry; but in the employ of Percy Buckle, Maggs’ secret past as a transported convict is quickly discovered when a dinner guest practices his parlour trick of mesmerism.

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The Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys

DATE FINISHED: March 10th, 2011

RATED: ****

SYNOPSIS: After a lonely childhood watching her mother’s descent into madness, Antoinette marries an Englishman who has travelled to Jamaica upon invitation by her step-brother. They embark upon a sensual love affair, but soon the village gossip pushes Antoinette’s new husband to the brink of madness himself as he begins to believe the rumours.

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