Those are last week’s icicles. All day today, driving to Traverse City, waiting in the surgical center waiting room while David had a cataract removed, then again driving home in the late afternoon, I was conscious of the sunlight, dark clouds, revealed expanse or glimpses of blue sky, play of light and shadow. The rich last light on the shore of Grand Traverse Bay was golden, with Old Mission peninsula cloud-dappled, and the water between the two land masses rippled like a sheet of silk. As designated driver, however, I didn’t feel it was my role to leave the “patient” cooling his heels in the car while I poked around taking pictures.
To revisit and wrap up what I started in yesterday’s posting:
THE JANE AUSTEN BOOK CLUB (hereafter JABC)) is more complex than my posting of the other day implied. At various times through the book, one sees reflections of Austen’s different novels, characters and situations. Once the first of these is glimpsed, the reader (okay, you know—this reader) is on the alert for more. It’s like the game of looking at a complicated drawing and finding, besides the obvious picture, “hidden” objects, right there on the page but turned on their sides or upside-down, incorporated so craftily into the obvious as to be almost invisible. Once you begin to see what’s “hidden,” you see more and more.
The novel does have a narrative of its own. Will Sylvia’s husband ask for a divorce? Will Allegra return to her lover? And what on earth is Grigg’s story? (His, for me, was the most unexpected.) These questions, along with the game of finding Austen parallels, kept me going until the end last night.
I had only two complaints. (Decide for yourself how serious they are.) One was the number of small editing glitches (I resisted going for the pencil!), and the other was the synopses of Austen’s plots at the end of the book, which reduced the stories to farce. I did however, enjoy the book, and since I love PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, SENSE AND SENSIBILITY, and PERSUASION unreservedly (and enjoy Austen’s other novels with a few reservations), I guess I’m recommending JABC. Those who haven’t read Austen would probably still enjoy JABC for its own characters and stories, though they’d miss all the fun of the allusions and parallels.