Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Classic Tuesday

by: Elizabeth Gaskell

Genre: Classic
Rating: 4 stars

Summary from Goodreads:
Gaskell's witty and poignant comedy of country town life - a gently comic picture of life in an English country town in the mid-nineteenth century,Cranford describes the small adventures of Miss Matty and Miss Deborah, two middle- aged spinster sisters striving to live with dignity in reduced circumstances.

Rich with humor and filled with vividly memorable characters—including the dignified Lady Glenmire and the duplicitous showman Signor Brunoni,Cranford is a portrait of kindness, compassion, and hope.

I listened to this while driving around this summer and the characters were so adorably funny that at times I almost had to pull over because I started laughing pretty hard. One of those memorable instances was when one of the esteemed ladies got dizzy when thinking that the earth is spinning around the sun not staying still. 
Rather than having any real plot it is a series of vignettes telling all of the secret foibles which can be found in the society of women. Gaskell teases in a gentle manner however, perhaps because she was aware of the restraints of the society which she created for them, genteel enough to not work but not wealthy enough to be truly independent. There really is very little for the women to do.
It is a wonderful comedy of manners which points out faults in these wonderful women what some of us can be sure to find in ourselves. It is an extremely happy read with endearing characters and a wonderful movie to go along with it (though it is a little mixed up as most movies are). I love Gaskell, I have since I first came across North and South, and this one is simply wonderful

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