Monday, 23 March 2015

Links for the next meeting - Northanger Abbey by Val McDermid

Hannah says:

Inevitably, some bad reviews for what is seen as a lazy, pointless project!  But, we were talking about a teenage narrative written by an adult, and how successful this was during the last meeting. This, together with a modern interpretation of what was originally a satire at the time, makes Mcdermid's attempt an interesting critical read...!

I though it was quite fun, not a piece of writing to take seriously, yet still depicting the difficulties of a naive teenager trying to find her feet, albeit in a very different era!  And the Gothic element is fun this true Gothic, can the genre flex and alter without becoming unrecognisable?...a neo-Gothic, if you like...!

John Mullan, Jane Austin expert, in The New Statesman

Robert McCrum in The Guardian

Barry Forshaw, Gothic expert, in The Independent

A mostly positive review on a Jane Austin blog

A very positive blog review

Monday, 2 March 2015

Links for the Next Meeting - How The Light Gets In by MJ Hyland

An article in the Financial Times about the 'Cat Bin Woman' written by MJ Hyland - it's interesting that The FT used Hyland to write about someone's life spinning out of control

Some (obvously positive) reviews on MJ Hyland's own site
"A female Holden, just as cynical and sensitive, but with less self-conscious verbiage"

& a negative review on Amazon
"I could not engage with this character at all and found the book uninteresting. It might appeal to a similarly disaffected adolescent, but it seems a rather dull account of teenage angst. Isn't life so unfair!"