Bowie's Top 100, Fingersmith by Sarah Waters

Keskustelu75 Books Challenge for 2016

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Bowie's Top 100, Fingersmith by Sarah Waters

Tämä viestiketju on "uinuva" —viimeisin viesti on vanhempi kuin 90 päivää. Ryhmä "virkoaa", kun lähetät vastauksen.

1Berly
Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 1, 2016, 6:18pm



We (IreadthereforeIam and Berly) will start discussing this book later in March, so go out and find your copy now!! : )

2Berly
maaliskuu 1, 2016, 6:19pm

David Bowie's Top 100 Reads:

Interviews With Francis Bacon by David Sylvester
Billy Liar by Keith Waterhouse
Room At The Top by John Braine
On Having No Head by Douglass Harding
Kafka Was The Rage by Anatole Broyard
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
City Of Night by John Rechy
The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
Iliad by Homer
As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner--reading with Megan (I Read Therefore I Am) soon...
Tadanori Yokoo by Tadanori Yokoo
Berlin Alexanderplatz by Alfred Döblin
Inside The Whale And Other Essays by George Orwell
Mr. Norris Changes Trains by Christopher Isherwood
Halls Dictionary Of Subjects And Symbols In Art by James A. Hall
David Bomberg by Richard Cork
Blast by Wyndham Lewis
Passing by Nella Larson
Beyond The Brillo Box by Arthur C. Danto
The Origin Of Consciousness In The Breakdown Of The Bicameral Mind by Julian Jaynes
In Bluebeard’s Castle by George Steiner
Hawksmoor by Peter Ackroyd
The Divided Self by R. D. Laing
The Stranger by Albert Camus
Infants Of The Spring by Wallace Thurman
The Quest For Christa T by Christa Wolf
The Songlines by Bruce Chatwin
Nights At The Circus by Angela Carter
The Master And Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
Herzog by Saul Bellow
Puckoon by Spike Milligan
Black Boy by Richard Wright
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Sailor Who Fell From Grace With The Sea by Yukio Mishima
Darkness At Noon by Arthur Koestler
The Waste Land by T.S. Elliot
McTeague by Frank Norris
Money by Martin Amis
The Outsider by Colin Wilson
Strange People by Frank Edwards
English Journey by J.B. Priestley
A Confederacy Of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
The Day Of The Locust by Nathanael West
1984 by George Orwell
The Life And Times Of Little Richard by Charles White
Awopbopaloobop Alopbamboom: The Golden Age of Rock by Nik Cohn
Mystery Train by Greil Marcus
Beano (comic, ’50s)
Raw (comic, ’80s)
White Noise by Don DeLillo
Sweet Soul Music: Rhythm And Blues And The Southern Dream Of Freedom by Peter Guralnick
Silence: Lectures And Writing by John Cage
Writers At Work: The Paris Review Interviews edited by Malcolm Cowley
The Sound Of The City: The Rise Of Rock And Roll by Charlie Gillete
Octobriana And The Russian Underground by Peter Sadecky
The Street by Ann Petry
Wonder Boys by Michael Chabon
Last Exit To Brooklyn By Hubert Selby, Jr.
A People’s History Of The United States by Howard Zinn
The Age Of American Unreason by Susan Jacoby
Metropolitan Life by Fran Lebowitz
The Coast Of Utopia by Tom Stoppard
The Bridge by Hart Crane
All The Emperor’s Horses by David Kidd
Fingersmith by Sarah Waters
Earthly Powers by Anthony Burgess
The 42nd Parallel by John Dos Passos
Tales Of Beatnik Glory by Ed Saunders
The Bird Artist by Howard Norman
Nowhere To Run The Story Of Soul Music by Gerri Hirshey
Before The Deluge by Otto Friedrich
Sexual Personae: Art And Decadence From Nefertiti To Emily Dickinson by Camille Paglia
The American Way Of Death by Jessica Mitford
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
Lady Chatterly’s Lover by D.H. Lawrence
Teenage by Jon Savage
Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh
The Hidden Persuaders by Vance Packard
The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
Viz (comic, early ’80s)
Private Eye (satirical magazine, ’60s – ’80s)
Selected Poems by Frank O’Hara
The Trial Of Henry Kissinger by Christopher Hitchens
Flaubert’s Parrot by Julian Barnes
Maldoror by Comte de Lautréamont
On The Road by Jack Kerouac
Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonder by Lawrence Weschler
Zanoni by Edward Bulwer-Lytton
Transcendental Magic, Its Doctrine and Ritual by Eliphas Lévi
The Gnostic Gospels by Elaine Pagels
The Leopard by Giusseppe Di Lampedusa
Inferno by Dante Alighieri
A Grave For A Dolphin by Alberto Denti di Pirajno
The Insult by Rupert Thomson
In Between The Sheets by Ian McEwan
A People’s Tragedy by Orlando Figes
Journey Into The Whirlwind by Eugenia Ginzburg

3drneutron
maaliskuu 2, 2016, 8:10am

I've added this thread to the group wiki. Plus, been wanting to try some Waters, so I've put this one on reserve on Overdrive from the public library. Hopefully it'll come in March! :)

4Berly
maaliskuu 2, 2016, 9:26pm

Hello Dr N! Fingers crossed! It would be fun to have you along. And thanks for adding this to the group wiki. : )

5LovingLit
maaliskuu 3, 2016, 1:04am

Found you! (us?)
Long overdue for a Waters read. Bowie makes it happen every time.

6Berly
maaliskuu 3, 2016, 1:13am

Net Bowie book we choose, you get to post the thread! If you want. ; )

7LovingLit
maaliskuu 4, 2016, 3:25am

Well, Kim, this was never supposed to be a 'thing' for me, I am strictly month by month. Really, I am a flight risk if you ask me to commit...to anything ;)
But yeah- ok! haha.

I have the middle edition, and I don't particularly like that cover but I am dying to read this author. Plus, I am reading 6 non-fictions at the mo... I could use some respite! Imight start it next week?

8Donna828
maaliskuu 5, 2016, 10:55am

What a good choice for the next Bowie read. I will be lurking in the background so I can share the joy of reading it for the first time. It's too early for a reread for me. Have fun!

9Berly
maaliskuu 6, 2016, 3:00am

>7 LovingLit: Megan--Well, month by month we can decide what's up next. ; ) See how easy that is?! And how I suck you in and respect you at the same time? LOL. I have ordered my copy and should be ready to go end of next week. Yay!

>8 Donna828: Donna--Very excited about this and look forward to you piping up and adding your two cents. : )

10LovingLit
maaliskuu 10, 2016, 2:10pm

I started!
I like it!
Carry on :)

11Berly
maaliskuu 10, 2016, 9:26pm

My copy came in! have to go get it.... : )

12LovingLit
maaliskuu 10, 2016, 10:00pm

Initial observation - too soon?
I like that it is written from the perspective of a slice of the underbelly (of sorts) of society. I get the feeling that so much literature written of that period takes only account of the lives of the upper class.

13LovingLit
maaliskuu 10, 2016, 10:01pm

Oh, and that last cover from >1 Berly: now has told me what is going to happen. Talk about cover spoiler alert!

14Berly
maaliskuu 14, 2016, 1:33am

Got my copy today!!! Mine has the first cover. Sorry--they are random covers. How could I know it was a spoiler alert?! : {

15LovingLit
maaliskuu 14, 2016, 4:52pm

>14 Berly: of course you couldnt know! I was tut tutting the publisher for making such a spoilery (and dare i say it, cheesy looking) cover.

Are you reading? Are you liking? I am really enjoying it. I love the character of Sue, she's so not of her time (seemingly to me, anyway). I like how she is pointing out the silliness of some of the customs of that time.

16Berly
maaliskuu 14, 2016, 9:38pm

I have just begun, but liking it. So, our Sue is a plucky one!

"Some girls I knew had mothers who were drunkards, or mothers who were mad: mothers they hated and could never rub along with. I should rather a dead mother, over one like that!

"I should rather Mrs Sucksby. She was better by chalks. She had been paid to keep me a month; she kept me seventeen years. What's love, if that ain't?" (pp 12-13)

17LovingLit
maaliskuu 15, 2016, 6:07pm

I love her way of talking too. And who knows if that is true to how people did speak in those days, but it is so differently constructed that some of the phrases just surprise and delight me. Clever writing.

18Berly
maaliskuu 15, 2016, 6:21pm

I know! Some of the phrasing is so cool! I looked up "better by chalks" and it is from William Dickinson's time, 1880, and it relates to "wagers were sometimes made to determine who could reach farthest or highest, and thero make a chalk mark."

And I love "never rub along with." ; )

So I am on about page 100, and the spoiler cover from up above, is making more sense. I suspect that Gentlemen's plan is about to be thwarted and perhaps by the lovely Sue herself?! Hints are being dropped left and right and I will just have to see if I am reading them right. Although, how will she get the money without the husband?

Reading on...!

19Berly
maaliskuu 15, 2016, 9:22pm

p. 116 Sue: "We were thinking of secrets...When I try now to sort out who knew what and who knew nothing, who knew everything and who was a fraud, I have to stop and give it up, it makes my head spin."

20LovingLit
maaliskuu 15, 2016, 10:31pm

>18 Berly: Oooh, you are doing homework! Great. This is practically a tutored read now ;)
Meanwhile, my lecturer has *suggested* another book for me to read. So read it I will! Fingersmith will be a late night read now methinks.

21Berly
maaliskuu 16, 2016, 12:47am

Okay, I can slip in some other reads, too. Where are you at in Fingersmith? Gentleman just arrived in my book. And what, pray tell, is your other *suggested* book? ; )

22LovingLit
maaliskuu 16, 2016, 1:45am

I am at the bit where gentleman is just about to arrive.
I will keep reading some each night, or at least each second night.
My new book in the fold is What is this thing called Science (An Assessment of the Nature and Status of Scence and it's Methods) by Alan Chalmers. To aid me in the 6,000 word report-writing....isn't he helpful?! ;) (I shouldn't josh, he actually is helpful)

23Berly
maaliskuu 16, 2016, 1:55am

Very helpful professor you have!!! I am reading Seven Brief Lessons on Physics...just for fun. ; ) Sounds like we are at about the same point in the book, so I will slow it down a tad. Carry on!

24LovingLit
maaliskuu 16, 2016, 4:40pm

Well, at least your lessons are...brief? (grasping at straws). I bet it is interesting though.

I dug hard last night and got reading....its very exciting!!! I cant quite see what the rest of the book is going to be 'about' seeing as most of the laid out plans are either happening or about to happen. It gives me hope that the rest of the story is going to throw a twist here or there. Last night I read the whole section when the Gentleman lives in the house. I am now reading with trepidation as I don't want their plan to be successful...yet a part of me doesn't want their plan to fail either. I am conflicted! But not more so than Sue, who is very conflicted. And rightly so.

25Berly
Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 18, 2016, 8:18pm

Oh sure, I slow down and you speed up!! LOL. Okay, I'll pick it back up. Glad you are enjoying the direction, or misdirection! I vote for twists. Onward...! What am I going to do while you are busy with your new job?! Congrats. ; )

26Cait86
maaliskuu 18, 2016, 12:19pm

I'm really enjoying this back and forth re: Fingersmith! It's a great book, and it's quite funny to read both of your reactions as you read it, since I've already read it and know what's going to happen. I can't wait to keep reading this thread! Enjoy the book (and if you like it, you'll like all of Waters' books).

27Berly
maaliskuu 18, 2016, 8:24pm

The Gentleman is no gentleman in my book. And I think Maude doesn't really love him and maybe never will. I wonder about her relationship with Sue. Are they going to be a couple? Is that too far out there? Or at least join forces against the Gentleman. I don't him to win. Can't wait to read more this weekend!

>26 Cait86: No fair! You already know the answers to all my questions. ; ) Thanks for posting and have fun tagging along with us.

28LovingLit
maaliskuu 18, 2016, 10:59pm

>25 Berly: I know, sorry! I just couldn't resist, and thought to read the thing and then knuckle down to uni stuff ;)
Isn't it good?! It is really exciting....I may be past you now as read some more last night. I'm a few chapters into the second section of the book, Maud's story. WOW. tell me where you are and we can confer.

29Berly
maaliskuu 19, 2016, 12:26am

I am about 50 pages behind you....gotta go read!

30Berly
Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 19, 2016, 1:36am

Oh! I wanted the boat to sink and now I want to just slap Gentelman and that b*#ch!! Blindsided I am. On to part two.

31LovingLit
maaliskuu 19, 2016, 3:16am

*spoilers ahead*
(I think its fair to say : don't read this thread at all if you want to read the book)

>30 Berly: Eeurgh! The double-crossing! As if it wasn't already bad enough, that sweet innocent Maud was about to get locked away, and then....conniving-fraudster-who-we-actually-quite-liked "Sue" gets dropped in it! And sweet Maud turns out to be the conniver? It's too much to take in, right! I LOVE it ;)

32Berly
maaliskuu 19, 2016, 11:55am

Okay--I have an idea. Let's post what chapter we are referring to before our comments and that way if we are not quite up to that point we can wait to read the comments and it won't ruin any of the surprises. So, I am at...

Section Two Chapter 7

The Uncle is a scoundrel and so is all the staff! They are so mean to Maud, who by the way is an amazing actress when she gets older. And would anything have changed if Sue had returned the affection of Maud at the manor or even at the decrepit inn? Or would she still have gone through with the switcharoo? And what's up with the Gentleman? How could he do this to poor Sue, having known her since she was a child? Dying to know the other side of the story.

Also, I am betting Sue gets out and gets her revenge...somehow.

33LovingLit
maaliskuu 20, 2016, 4:40pm

OOOh, good idea.

Chapter 10 (just started- no spoilers)

Having now heard Maud's story, I can see how she calculated she was able to be. It was like she was biding her time until *some* (any?) excitement arrived on her doorstep. It is weird though, the two of them suspicious of each other and also both feeling terrible about what they each were trying to do to each other, and yet both intending fully to go through with it anyway. I wonder if they will ultimately get together and fleece the Gentleman of whatever money he manages to make out of this affair. I am convinced we haven't heard the last of Sue, either.

Do you think the next section will be from the Gentleman's perspective? Or do we know all we need to of him already....we certainly know he is after money, and I bet he is intending to take Maud's half as soon as he is able.

34Berly
Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 20, 2016, 5:42pm

I agree wholeheartedly!

For now, I am astounded at the double meaning of remarks first read though Sue's perspective and now through Maud's...

Chapter 10

Gentleman is speaking to Maud: " 'I am afraid, Miss Lilly,' he says, more than once, " that you want discipline, yet. I thought your touch firmer than this. I am sure it was firmer, a month ago. Don't say you've forgotten your lessons in my short absence. After all our labour! There is one thing an artist must always avoid, in the execution of his works: that is hesitation. For that leads to weakness; and through weakness, greater designs than this one have foundered. You understand? You understand me?' " (Pages 279)

Of course this could be about Gentleman's critique of Maud's brush technique, but now I know he is really stealing her to stick to their dastardly plan. Gentlemen is quite gifted in double entendre!!

I am not-so-secretlyy hoping the girls get together and gang up on Gentleman, because I am convinced he is going to try to steal Maud's share, too. But since that is what I am expecting, perhaps Water will pull another fast one that I don't see coming...

35LovingLit
maaliskuu 20, 2016, 7:51pm

Re: your quote, the cheeky Gentleman certainly is bold! Sue noted that he liked to test her mettle by alluding to 'things' in the presence of others. This aspect of his personality strikes me as consistent with him being narcissistic...amongst other things. He is nothing if not a professional scammer, and some of them are real clever!!

Looks like we are keeping up with each other perfectly. I hope to finish this book over Easter, and then I can concentrate on my *ahem* report- remember that? I can, barely ;)

36Berly
Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 25, 2016, 6:06pm

Okay, I am up to Part 3

Poor Maud. What a mess. I guess back then you were a husband's property. And no escape. No money, not even shoes. No help either from the Mr. Hawtrey, the publisher. Scoundrel. How alone she must have felt to got back to the burgh.

And I knew one of the mother's was going to be alive, I just didn't think it would be Mrs. Sucksby's (and is that a name or what?!)!!

Okay, back to Susan in the mad house...

37LovingLit
Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 25, 2016, 10:17pm

Oh boy, we are in synch. Too perfect! I am 2 pages in to Part 3

*** spoilers ahead*** ( for those still in part 2)

So, lemme get this straight. Maud is Mrs Sucksby's actual daughter, and Mrs Sucksby gave her to a life of finery (which was actually hell with silver cutlery...) and raised Sue as her adoptive daughter so that Sue might be spared the horror of hideous uncle, and the horror of taking her fortunes for granted. Mrs Sucksby acquiesced to this plan, that was cooked up by the scared mother of Sue, so that she might be able to eventually steal the inheritance due to Sue.
Is this about right? If so, omg, wasn't there an easier way to steal the inheritance? Like to get the gentleman to woo whoever it was that everyone thought the real "lady" and just split the cash? All that ground work the gentleman did...for so much double-crossing and secrets. Full on!

38Berly
maaliskuu 25, 2016, 9:53pm

I know! What a mess!!

And to think that Mrs. Sucksby was pretending to love Susan all that time and then just locked her away. She absolutely wins the Biggest Charlatan Award! And nicely put...hell with silver cutlery. ; )

39LovingLit
maaliskuu 25, 2016, 10:16pm

And spooning gin to the babies?! T keep them quiet? Tllk about breeding generations of ill-functioning people??
Also, I better go back and add the spoiler proper to my last post....that could really wreck the reading experience for someone!

40LovingLit
maaliskuu 27, 2016, 3:09pm

Chapter 16
Getting into the last straights now! I read this morning after setting W up in front of the tv at some ungodly hour....I wanted to clear my schedule and read to the end, but- circumstances don't allow for that ;)
What is Sue to do!? I'm at the part where she has confronted Sucksby and Maud, with the help of Charles the knife boy....she is still in the dark as to what on earth is going on, though she doesn't know that yet, and Maud is trying to give her signals left right and centre that it's not safe at the house and she must go. Of course, Sue reads that as territorial posturing, so it's all very confused.
Have you read this weekend!? I advise you to clear your schedule and get going :)

41Berly
Muokkaaja: maaliskuu 30, 2016, 7:41pm

Finished!!

So, I am somewhat unsatisfied with the ending. Not sure I can put my finger on it. It didn't kill the book by any means, but...I will have to think on it more. And I have to say, looking back, the men sure are not figures to look up to in this book! We have shifty Gentleman, and opportunistic Mr. Ibbs, the boys are whiners, the doctors are clueless and self-serving, the Uncle is insane and mean, Mr. Hawtrey couldn't be bothered, the priest was on the dole, and the random street guy with the cab wanted sex. Jeesh!!

42LovingLit
maaliskuu 29, 2016, 2:01am

Superb. Again, we are reading in line with each other, I just finished this afternoon as well :)

The ending was ok for me- I thought it was pretty good, actually. I was longing for a happy section wherever it came in the book, that it came at the end was a relief! I was surprised that Mrs Sucksby all of a sudden came on all caring and concerned for both 'her girls'...although, I guess the signs were there....her history of at least not hurting them while they were in her care. (never mind what she sent them into while they weren't in her care...)

I noticed the whingeing young men as well, which may have been unusual for the day- but I think I would have been upset at the goings on there. How old was Charles supposed to be? A child? Maybe 13 or 14?

But, at the moment, I am thinking this is at least a 4.5 star read for me. I'm considering it being my first 5-star read since Jan last year! It certainly is a fine specimen of its kind of writing, ad I loved reading it. All of it :)

Bowie strikes again!

43Berly
maaliskuu 29, 2016, 3:54am

Spoiler!!!

I guess my problem is that Maud went back to the house, and she got all the inheritance and was making no effort to work it out with Susan. And I don't know how either of them can trust the other after what transpired. But I wanted the chance of a happy ending, and I got that, so waffling between 4.5 and 5.0. Rarely have I read such a plot twister and it was so entertaining. : )

Bowie is batting a 1,000!! Are you going to read Master and Margarita's in April with the group read or are you swamped?

44LovingLit
maaliskuu 29, 2016, 6:55pm

My thinking on Maud retreating back to the house, was that she had nowhere else to go. Her poxy Uncle was declining, which she was probably pleased about, and at least she didn't have to go into a house for destitute women. She probably thought that Sue wanted nothing to do with her so was sitting on her guilt at a familiar place.
The mutual trust thing got me wondering too, but Sue had noted that Maud had tried to rescue her from Gentleman at Sucksby's house, and she was touched by that. Maybe their mutual betrayal cancelled each other's out??! I'm pretty sure that is a scientific possibility! ;)

45drneutron
huhtikuu 3, 2016, 4:14pm

So I finished up and now I can safely read this thread! I loved the plot and the characters. The twistiness was just right up my alley - an now on to another of hers!

46LovingLit
huhtikuu 3, 2016, 7:27pm

>45 drneutron: I loved the twistiness too, but particularly the way that it didn't dangle clues left right and centre, it just shifted and made you look at things from another angle.
What are you reading of hers next then? I am going to leave the one I own (The Little Stranger) and track down The Night Watch, I think.

47drneutron
huhtikuu 4, 2016, 8:22am

I've got Tipping the Velvet on reserve on Overdrive. It'll probably take a month to get to me. I

48Berly
huhtikuu 4, 2016, 8:45am

I'd love to read another Waters! But I don't own any others and I am not seeing it in my immediate future...I am all booked up! LOL. Maybe this summer...