First! I am sorry this is late 😦 There are three reasons for this.
Most importantly: I made the mistake of trying to read two very long novels at once. Don Quixote AND Middlemarch.
Less importantly (well except to me, it took more energy than the former): I have been having stomach issues for a week now.
Even less importantly: The stomach issues and my natural tendencies have created some wicked insomnia.
But! onto what I thought of Middlemarch.
This was an example of a book I previously tried to read and could not get into. However, this time, unlike the Iliad, I WAS able to read it and get into it. So, that was awesome!
George Eliot is a pen name, during the 1800s it was less likely people would read a novel by a woman in England (probably elsewhere but I have noticed that a lot of women authors in the United States at this time were able to publish under their real names). When I was younger I always thought George Eliot was a man. Imagine my adulthood surprise to find otherwise.
I am not a fan of Jane Austen novels, which were written about the same time. I am also not overly fond of a lot of Dickens works (which I keep trying and failing to read most of them). I -am- fond of the Brontes. But, Middlemarch? I loved it. I loved the complexity of the novel. I loved that it was not merely focused on love, as Austen, but also about personal choices and the ripple effect they have, and politics and just life in general at that time. It has both a gossipy feel and a richly layered feel. In essence, there is something for almost everyone in it.
I read up a little and found out that even though at this time, most English novels were either published in installments like Dickens, or in 3 volume sets, Middlemarch was such a long novel (one of the longest in English history) that the publishers published it in 8 volumes, over the course of 18 months. They wanted people hooked. And they were. Middlemarch was immensely popular even in its time. And since, it has remained immensely popular.
For anyone that is looking for a long, satisfying novel to read this summer or during the winter when you merely want to be home under your blankets, please pick up Middlemarch. You can find it fairly cheap or free for Kindle or get the hardback copy. I was surprised how easy it was to read on Kindle.
Have a great week everyone! I will return on THURSDAY in a week and a half, hopefully with Don Quixote under my belt! 😀