"You just have to read more of it at each sitting," she scolded me. So, like a good girl, I soldiered on. And was glad. She recommends going back and reading it again, but, too many books, too little time.
Next I started on Ghost Light by Joseph O'Conner, a fictionalized story of a love affair between the Irish playwright, John Millington Synge, and a working class girl who acted in some of his plays. He was of the Protestant landed gentry and she a Catholic from a Dublin tenement. Not the usual recipe for great Irish romance! It starts when she is an old lady living in a London slum, freezing because she has no heat, and close to starvation because she has no money for food. Bleak sounding I know, but a story wonderfully told. She warms and nourishes herself, and us, with her memories.
Here's a taste from the last chapter......
"There are eras of every life that have a carapace about them, a scar grown out of the woundedness. We gaze back on them as though they had meaning, contained intimations of future things - the seeds of the very subsequence we are now in a position to see. It is tempting to persuade ourselves we suffered a kind of illiteracy - we could not read the runes because we were young, or green, or undiscerning, or blind to the consequence. But that is not the truth, or not the whole truth, unmediated; for we sensed, even then, that this framed time must end and that all would be changed from this out. But we were adrift in a maelstrom of human feeling; already it was too late to swim. And we must somehow have wanted it, preferring the storm to the harbour; the hurts, the shattered feelings - the hurts to others too. We are innocent of nothing we chose. All our lives we do battle in the manacles of our mothers. But even the shaken chain has its music."
There's still a tottering pile on my night table, but they can wait. I'm busy rereading Ghost Light.
Give it a try. You might love it, as I did.
Thank you Little Blister!
And thank you Mr. O'Conner for a great yarn.