Sunday, July 4, 2010

Anya Seton--Am I Ripe for the Gothic Challenge?

Although I've got five Chunksters under my belt for the Chunkster Challenge and am reading a sixth--The Invisible Bridge by Julie Orringer (scroll down)--I'm faring far worse with The Gothic Challenge. I've read only one Gothic, Arcadia Falls by Carol Goodman.

I considered withdrawing from The Gothic Challenge, mostly because I've been thinking that I'm wasting my time with these novels, especially because I don't enjoy them nearly as much as I did in my youth. Even so, they have an indescribable allure.

I chanced upon a blogger discussing Dragonwyck by the incomparable mid-twentieth-century American author Anya Seton. As a high-school student, my mother the librarian got me hooked on Katherine, a historical novel about Katherine Swynford, the wife of John of Gaunt, of the House of Lancaster (an English royal of the 14th century--actually I believe their children were Lancastrian, though I'm not at all sure John of Gaunt was considered so during his lifetime).

I believe I also read Seton's Green Darkness , though I have only the vaguest memories of it.

Dragonwyck beckons, and it's a true Gothic published in 1941, at the height of Daphne DuMaurier's "Gothic" fame.


  1. Anya Seton! That takes me right back to when I was working in the local library, I hadn't realised she was American. I only have vague memories too, it's so long ago.
    It will be interesting to hear what you think of Dragonwyck if you read it.

  2. I don't see a post for the Goodman--Did you like it? I'm listening to her The Sonnet Lover--I've tried to read it several times, but I think listening will be a better option--I've read her other earlier novels, though, and got on well with nearly all of them. I've never read Anya Seton, but I do have Katherine--I should really read it as it sounds right up my alley. This sounds like a fun challenge.