Monday, January 27, 2014

Ivanhoe Progress, a Surprise Book Sale, and More Reading

Ivanhoe continues to entertain, and I've become terribly concerned with the fate of Rebecca, the beautiful Jewess, daughter of Isaac. She has been meticulously tending to the wounds of Ivanhoe, who is Wilfred, son of Cedric the Saxon, and who is a captive like all of them in the Norman's castle. Rebecca is saving his life, in fact, with herbal knowledge known only to women of her "tribe."

But what fiends these Normans be!! They are barbaric, with no human feeling whatsoever. Bloodthirsty churls! And they have the gall to call the elderly Isaac an evil usurer and a leech on the lifeblood of England. How absurd! The reader well knows that the darkest evil in England is resident within the Norman nobility and that they are the ones who have ruined England.

A huge attack has commenced on the Norman castle that is holding so many Saxons prisoner for no worthy reason. Sir Walter Scott spares no details in the description of every  aspect of the preparations for the attack and the initial battering of the castle. Sigh! I've finished the third installment of reading, but the full brunt of the battle has not yet occurred. Onward this week!!

Katrina of Pining for the West has recently posted her thoughts about Ivanhoe, Chapters 20-30. Please visit for more information!

Book Sale:
While in the midst of my madcap dozens of errands before my mother's birthday party Saturday afternoon in Massachusetts, I came upon a sign that said, "Library Book Sale Today!" Well, wasn't there the screech of tires as I pulled into a parking spot nearby? I ran in and quickly found two books of interest within five minutes: The Oxford Companion of English Literature (5th Edition--1985) and The Razor's Edge by W. Somerset Maugham. I've never read anything at all by Maugham, but this one sounds intriguing. Have you read anything by Somerset Maugham? What was the book and what was your experience like?

After joyous family reunion activities, I returned home late Sunday (yesterday) and today have been trying to catch up with myself. I read only 10 pages of Three Junes this afternoon before falling asleep. How I wish I were making greater progress with books!!


  1. I read The Razor's Edge several years ago and loved it. I'm a fan of Somerset Maugham, who I think writes very elegantly. He's definitely of a certain generation, but if you like early 20th century writing, he's a fine example of it.

    1. I'm so delighted that you loved Razor's Edge and that you're a devotee of Maugham. He's a writer that has slipped by me, and I look forward to digging in. Thank you!

  2. I've never read The Razor's Edge, but The Painted Veil was a favorite a few years ago. I keep meaning to read more Maugham.

    Love the header photo of Sasha!

    1. JoAnn,
      I'm noting The Painted Veil into my "WannaRead" list. I'm so glad to have another Maugham recommendation!
      I'm glad you like the photo of Sasha. She's a wonderful, though mischievous dog. Keeps me on my toes!