Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Jane Eyre for the 21st century

Sample juicy lines Tracy Chevalier's edited collection:

"I was no more the Grace Poole who laid herself down on the narrow bed in the sunlit attic than I was Mr. R. himself. I rose up from childbed another woman." Helen Dunmore

We visit the synagogue, to satisfy our curiosity; boil eggs in the hot springs; go to the opera and smirk at the bad acting. I glimpse this woman as she could have been. Emma Donoghue

It turned out the sounds I heard coming from the attic weren't the screams of Mr. Rochester's mad wife Bertha...It turned out that it had been a parrot, screaming in the attic. The parrot had belonged to his wife. She had got it in the islands, where she had also contracted the tropical fever that killed her. Francine Prose

Grandma is the most pious person under our roof, yet the way she lives her faith is different from Baba's. I start telling her about Gerard, little by little, so urgent is the need to open up to someone.
"Don't bind your heart, my lamb," Grandma says.
"Because he is a Christian?"
"Because he is a migrating bird...Here today, gone tomorrow." Elif Shafak

I forget who it was warned me that "Royalty offers friendliness--but never friendship."
Everything was my fault, of course, everyone knew it, everyone blamed me. No one blamed him.
He abdicated the ultimate status. He abdicated Title. Country. Friends. Family. Respect. Reverence. Deference. Safety. Security.
And all for love. Think about that.
I do, every single day, though it has become easier. Susan Hill

Hooyo said it was my face--that I've got the kinda eyes and lips that make men think they got a chance--she even started chatting about a niqab and I was like, hold on, bruv, there ain't no way I'm covering my face...It wasn't anything about my face, anyway, it was those E-cups and the way my badhi strained against the cheap, nylon school trousers. Nadifa Mohamed

Already she was stuffing the book in her bag and picking up the map. "What's Jane Eyre about, then?" he asked, lobbing the question in her way to slow her down.
Jenn left a long pause so that he would know how deliberate her selection of words was. "A governess full of inner strength who marries a completely inappropriate man."
"Oh. Right."
They moved on, and Ed didn't ask where they were going. Tracy Chevalier

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