Monday, 31 May 2010

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll

Title: Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll
Genre: Children's classic
Rating: 10/10
Comments: As part of our bedtime routine I read Hannah a chapter of a book each night even though she is too young to understand anything yet. This gets her used to my voice and to the concept of reading and signals that it is time to go to sleep. After getting bored senseless reading about Spot the dog I decided I would only read what I enjoyed - a bored reader does not transmit a love of books to the listener.

I have now decided that Alice is a book(s) best enjoyed read out loud - it's hard to appreciate the poetry and verse when read silently to one's self. It's clearly a book designed as much for adults as children with its clever puns and delightful nonsense more than standing the test of time and repeated reads.

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Big Women by Fay Weldon

Title: Big Women by Fay Weldon
Novel, sociology, feminism
Rating: 8.5/10
Comments: Like all of Fay Weldon's works this is an eminently readable novel with simple straightforward prose that disguises the power and depth of the story underneath. Weldon traces the rise, evolution and subgroups of activist feminism from the 1960s to the 1980s through the vehicle of a feminist publish house and the women who run it. She skilfully- and somewhat cruelly - portrays many of the feminist stereotypes -including the detached academic, the wealthy woman of independent means who can indulge her interests, the man-hating lesbian extremist and the put upon women who do all the grunt work. An entertaining read.