Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Woman in White update
Posted by JaneGS
I started reading Wilkie Collins' wonderful novel The Woman in White in weekly installments last November. The WomaninWhite.co.uk is issuing weekly installments of the novel, formatted, on the same schedule, and with the same marvelous John McLenan illustrations as its original publication in Charles Dickens's periodical All The Year Round.
I started out sticking to the weekly schedule, but then started saving up a month's worth of installments to read in one sitting as other reading projects intruded on the weekly schedule. I'm really enjoying reading the novel this way. For one thing, this process means I can't plow through, skimming for plot points, and missing the forest for the trees. For another, I often feel a sense of loss when I finish a really good book--I miss the friends I've made between the covers, and wish that we could go on meeting regularly so that I could hear about their latest adventures. Reading a long novel in weekly/monthly batches drags out the process without making me feel guilty that I'm not getting on with it!
I did pull my paperback copy of the book off my bookshelf last weekend when I got caught up to June to find out where we were in relation to the end and discovered we're about two-thirds done with it.
I read WiW a long time ago and remembered the basic outline but not most of the details so this has been almost like reading it for the first time. It's a good novel, but I do wish Collins hadn't based so much of the plot on the uncanny resemblance between two women. This is just the kind of thing that makes those who don't love Victorian novels roll their eyes and groan.