Possession: my minor contribution to the book review section

Posted by Lou. The time is 6:00pm here in London, UK.

Whilst Bel has been ploughing through The List I've been limping through one novel - Possession. I liked it, but I found it difficult to read due to my dislike of convoluted/ old-school/ pre-modern poetry. I actually ended up skipping the poetry excerpts and sticking to the main story in an effort just to get through it, and enjoyed it much better for that.

Even though I had seen the film and thus theoretically knew the storyline, I still found myself drawn in and desperate to know - in this way sampling the fanaticism of the contemporary characters. I could also sense that there are many other layers to the novel that I was not appreciating - intelligent nods and winks to literary mechanisms, literary academia and 19th century writing that entirely passed above my head. (Thankfully I was able to appreciate the critical analysis of the concept of "biographers", so didn't feel entirely dense.) To be able to incorporate those for the more sophisticated reader and still manage to keep the story alive for a pleb such as myself without appearing pretentious or smug is quite an achievement.

I wouldn't necessarily go out and recommend this book to a friend, but I do think that those poetically-minded and/ or more literary than myself would dig it (and probably already did some time ago).

(In accordance with Bel's habits I have used a picture of the version I read - one of the irritants of amazon is not having a choice of book cover. I would never normally buy the film edition of something.)

One thought on “Possession: my minor contribution to the book review section”

  1. Possession is on The List! I'm sure of it :D Well done, Lou.

    I'm not going to read it this time round because I'm pretty sure I've read it in the last 5 or 8 years - and enjoyed it. I seem to recall it being one of those books that was a hard slog but paid off in the long run...

    And - gawd, Lou - I know EXACTLY what you mean about 'major motion picture' editions of books! Is there anything worse!? When I heard they were making the Narnia movies I ran out and bought a box set of the Chronicles with the gorgeous old illustrations because I knew it would become impossible to get a non-branded set from then on...