Tag Archives: novel

vanity fair

10 Sep

london 7.25pm 19C dry monday 2018

itv have been showing vanity fair, an adaptation from the novel . i have googled the novel to read whilst seeing the episodes weekly. i am surprised that i have not read it before. the tv adaptation is not quite the same as the book. so not a faithful rendition of the novel, but the novel have a lot of asides and past history of the characters being inserted into the main action. it makes for a very convoluted mass which i can see will take a lot of filming if you want to include everything. so  better to just read the novel whilst following the action on tv. 

i find it very nice to read it, whilst seeing it enacted in the tv adaptation. and seeing is the operative word, because you can be   looking at the tv episodes and literally see it and get an idea of the clothes , the manners, the houses, the settings. it is only an idea of course, because it would be very expensive to mimic the real thing. the clothes for one thing are so clean and well cut, which i am sure cannot be like that in real life regency london. and everything is so clean… not a speck of dust or dirt anywhere. though i have a feeling if they show all the dirt and grime, we wont like it. 

here is a nice critique of the novel, lots of spoilers though. 

satin island

22 Sep

london 4.09pm cloudy, occasional rain heavy at times, 14.1C tuesday 2015

saw tom Mccarthy’s book satin island on the new book shelf, and took it to read whilst my chrome book is charging. i have read a review of it online. it is quite interesting, i read half the book and decided to borrow it. it is like him trying to study modern man and modern life, as if he is studying primitive societies. and also him trying to find a unifying theory to tie up all the bits and bobs of seemingly unrelated events that happen in life and coming to one big great explanation of what it is all about.  so far i have no idea why he chose that title for his book. 

added 8.09pm. finished the book. ( it did not take me that long. there was a long shopping trip i made in between the library and now)

i dont quite see the plot of it, maybe there isn’t any.

i enjoy it for the stream of consciousness style of writing and the huge amount of research help he must have got to come up with all that bits and bobs of information and ideas. i can imagine it written as a blog with all the post listed and numbered as he had done… each paragraph in each chapter has a distinct number. for eg, the 6.7 being the 7th paragraph in chapter 6.

it is rather arbitrary what is put in the paragraphs. at least it is to me.

 sometimes it is entirely different subject matter, other times it is a continuation of a story. but the whole thing reminds me of someone who is blogging , in a stream of consciousness way writing whatever comes to mind, or whatever took his attention, via news, or other people, or just remembering something; stopping writing when he has run out of things or ideas for that moment  and then resuming posting another paragraph when he is inspired to write again and differentiating one post from another by adding a number to that chapter. it was interesting enough and intrigueing enough to keep me reading till the end and finish off the book in one day. it is a fascinating exercise. still dont know what it is all about, though. haha. 

legion and the emperor’s soul , by brandon sanderson

2 Jun


I just finished this book in one day. it is a tremendously good read. 

he is a very good writer, creating characters and worlds that are very distinctive and interesting.

it is two novellas.

you know in real life we have people with multiple personalities, right? well he used this to make this story called legion, to investigate a crime. it is a great idea but he makes it comes alive with added flourishes which makes for a great plot. 

the other story, featured a striking character, a master forger of souls…. in a world where there are forgers of objects which uses their seal, like the chinese uses seals to stamp their artistic works. 

as usual, reviews cannot really convey the intricate plot nor the way with words that he has to weave a beautiful story to while away a few hours. 

these stories are wonderful in that they do take you out of this world and live in another that is purely fiction and which you might like to live in but know that it will be impossible once u analyse the full implications of what makes that world what it is. if it is so easy to forge things and objects and people, nothing is genuine anymore. it would be an impossible world, though it would be a beautiful one as all objects will be like antiques, and ornate and beautiful. 

and then once the story is finished and you have that moment when u wished it would not end and you actually live in that world, you come back to this one, and realise this is a wonderful world even with all its strife and bloodshed and strange behaviour of its peoples… and that behaviour can be mighty strange i can tell you.

I mean if someone tells me a village in india can witness group rapes of young girls and than hang them up in trees, i would say that is a wild imagination , or 200 girls can be kidnapped and nothing is done to find them, i would say pull the other leg. 

but nature is rather red in tooth and claw as witness in the bbc springwatch. this year is really a good one to watch. the most shocking thing for me is the bitten mother bird who swallowed the youngest chick (of three) when it died (how i wonder, did it die? did it starve to death as the other two took all the food, or did the other two kill it? they do, u know) and regurgitated it not once, but twice, (because it is not quite digested yet and is too big for the other two to eat.)

so i guess what human beings do to each other is par for the course. it’s nature innit?