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Be sure to scroll down the page today

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There are TWO posts today...Sorry about that :)

Saturday, January 5, 2013

It's Over Charles (the conclusion of the Bleakalong)

[Link to mid-way review post]

Dear Charles,

It's finally over between us.  While the first half of Bleak House was quite an interesting story, with loads of crazy characters, interesting relationships, and compelling societal commentary, it was that commentary that began to grate my nerves.  I get it.  London at this time was pretty much a cesspool, chock full of unsavory characters, chief among them the lawyers and moneylenders.  The good people like Esther (Eleanor, inside joke), Ada, Mr. Jarndyce, Caddy Jellyby, and poor little Joe, were few and far between.  Little Joe really hurt me the most Charles.  Did you have to do that to poor Joe?  I know there are thousands more like him roaming the streets of London who met a similar fate, but still, couldn't you have been kind to him?

I am glad that most of my favorite characters had happy endings despite the ultimate outcome of Jarndyce vs. Jarndyce.  Richard learned a hard lesson, but I still have no sympathy for him.  Esther most of all, her final outcome made me most pleased.  Because I have to tell you Charles, I gagged when she promised herself to her guardian Mr Jarndyce.  I know marriages between young ladies and older men were common, but he was like a father figure to her, so ew!  Not cool.  I'm glad Mr Jarndyce changed that situation around to Esther's benefit.  I also like how he handled Mr Guppy at the very end too.

Well Charles, this brings me to the final outcomes for your other major characters   I'm sure other readers feel the same as I do.  Your writing makes me feel something different for each and every one:

Both Lord and Lady Dedlock: sympathy.  He really did love her. She did not have to go out that way.
Mr Tulkinghorn: disgust.  Phew!  I spit on you and only wish you suffered more.
Dectective Bucket: boredom.  Nice guy, but bored to tears.
George Rouncewell: man's best friend.  Reminds me of a very sweet, well meaning shaggy dog.  So glad he reconnected with his family and found purpose.
Skimpole: more disgust and ew. Glad he was eventually found out and kicked out the door.

So Charles, although my interest waned towards the end, it does not deter me from giving one of your works a try.  Your creativity is amazing and although written during the Victorian period, you are quite readable.  What you suggest Charles?  Great Expectations, Oliver Twist, Tale of Two Cities?  I'm just not sure.  Whatever I decide, I'll make sure I block off two months to read it as I'm sure it will be another chunkster.

Until next time Charles!


With the hustle and bustle of the holidays, I figured a few extra days may be needed for wrapping up Bleak House.  So what did you think?  Will you ever read another of Dickens' work again?  Overall I enjoyed it, even though it was a bit long.

Thank you so much for joining me on this readalong.  It was the first one I hosted.  I think next time I'll post a chapter schedule with questions so we can chat during our reading.  I thought the timing of this wouldn't allow for mini-discussions, and to be honest, I wasn't sure what to expect from Bleak House.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this sojourn and I look forward to spending time with you again in the future :)  Three Musketeers anyone????

Please post a link to your final thoughts in the comments section!

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