Thursday, 4 November 2010

Clara Hopgood

This is one of the books I picked up at random on the very last day of Borders closure. I picked it up, because of when it was written and when it was set. Whist a bit earlier in time than what I set my adventures on the DAC, it was close enough that hopefully I would pick up some ideas and language.

Not knowing anything about the author, a quick read on wikipedia revealed the following. I was especially impressed with the quote from George Orwell. Doing a bit of googling, it turns out that other people such as DH Lawrence and Arnold Bennett had held him in some praise - all looking good.

I have the Everymen edition and it came with an introduction written by Lorraine Davis who is an English literature lecturer at Liverpool Hope University college. As Introductions go, it is one of the worst I have ever read. Dull, pompous, bloated and written by a thesaurus w’nker - which is not as bad as a grammar w’nker but still annoying. I am not one however to judge a book by its introduction. So what did I think of the story ?

Clara Hopgood is unbelievable.

Unbelievable that it ever got printed
Unbelievable that the likes of Lawrence and Orwell would praise the author (a joke from beyond the grave perhaps ? )

I will say one thing that is amazing about the book. It is the fact that the author spends an entire page describing some walking down a path, then crams in entire epic events in to the space of two pages.

She walked down the summery village road which was adorned with spring fauna and at the end was a small river with a stone bridge.  Then someone went to Germany and then so and so  died.

He manages to fill all 144 pages like this and it made following this story extremely hard. I think someone was an Atheist. Pretty sure someone was Jewish and I think there might of been a Quaker in there too. Not sure what they were doing, but it had something to do with a bookshop.

I am not even going to bother putting in an amazon link for this. In fact I will pay someone to take my copy away 

Disclaimer The photo has nothing to do with the book. As far as I 'm aware there was no point in the story where Clara was naked with a skeleton on a couch - though I could be wrong. I was asleep for most of it.


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