Friday, March 16, 2012

Bleakhouse Read-a-long Week 3

In my edition of Bleakhouse, we are now 182 pages in and Dickens is still introducing us to new characters and characters who seemed to play a part not worth noting are suddenly reappearing. One, Mr.Woodcourt, has now appeared three times but he only finally merits a name the third time we meet him. It makes me wonder who else I might have overlooked early on.

What I Liked This Week:

This description of a new-to-us character, Mr. Turveydrop:
"He was a fat old gentleman with a false complexion, false teeth, false whiskers, and a wig. He had a fur collar, and he had a padded breast to his coat, which only wanted a star or a broad blue ribbon to be complete. He was pinched in, and swelled out, and got up, and strapped down, as much as he could possibly bear...He had a cane, he had an eye-glass, he had a snuff box, he had rings, he had wristbands, he had everything but any touch of nature; he was not like youth, he was not like age, he was not like anything in the world, but a model of Deportment."
Which was all this ridiculous man was about. He has spent every minute of everyday since he married and of his widowhood relying on his wife and son to earn enough money to allow him to pretend to be aristocracy. I do so love Dickens' characters!

What I Didn't Like:

Mr. Guppy. Granted, as characters go, he is definitely memorable but he is so freakin' creepy! He's quite possibly the original literary stalker. Our poor little heroine is quite beside herself.

Also, nearly a quarter of the way in, I'm getting anxious for some of the many parts of this story to start coming together while I can still remember all of them! We've had quite a number of characters that appear quite prominently in one chapter then disappear all together. I'm sure I must be patient; I have a notion we're going to read at least this much more before anything starts to become clear. I'm thoroughly enjoying the discussion of this novel with Wallace and the rest of the members of the readalong at Unputdownables.

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