Really lengthy in fact. This is in no way a slight against YA literature or it’s quality, but when you read predominantly YA and then try to read Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, it seems like it’s the world’s longest book. It’s at least over 500 pages and not only does it have two family trees in the front of the book, but it has a ‘Cast of Characters’ that’s five pages long. Seriously. That’s longer than most Russian novels’ casts of characters. I’ve been reading it since Saturday and I am enjoying it. If I was reading YA books, I could probably have read two, maybe three books in that amount of time.
The novel is about Henry VIII trying to get out his marriage to Katharine of Aragon and marry the tempting Anne Boleyn. The main character Thomas Cromwell – not Oliver Cromwell, they are different – is in the thick of it. I don’t even know if I can explain more of the plot. There’s a lot of courtly intrigue going on – that is, in between all of the time spent making fun of Thomas More – but you really should read it. I’m about halfway through and the writing is amazing so it makes sense it won the Booker prize.
I also finished listening to The Black Count which is about Alexander Dumas the novelist’s father, which was very good. I did learn how little I actually knew about the French Revolution and the subsequent Napoleonic wars. My history classes in school had very little world history: we did the Spanish explorers, then skipped to talking briefly about the Hsssians and General Lafayette in the Revolutionary War, then straight onto the World Wars. And the history of Asia or the Eastern half of the world? Nope, not at all. So it’s not really a surprise that I don’t know too much about the French Revolution.
Finally, two things. One, I may have an exciting new blogging opportunity but I may not. How cryptic! I’ll keep you posted. Two, here’s a great article about a comic library at MSU featuring a guy who looks a lot like Santa Claus. Enjoy!