The Awkward Age

The Awkward Age by Henry James

The Awkward Age by Henry James

Nanda Brookenham is coming of age, and thus ‘coming out’ in London society – which leads to complications in her family’s social set in London’s fin de siècle life. James presents the novel almost entirely in dialogue, an experiment that adds to the immediacy of the scenes but also creates serious ambiguities about characters and their motives.

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The Story of Avis

The Story of Avis by Elizabeth Stuart Phelps

The Story of Avis by Elizabeth Stuart Phelps

Elizabeth Stuart Phelps’s novel is set in a New England college town, and focuses on Avis Dobell, a professor’s daughter. Avis is a talented painter, and bucks against the constraints placed on women in the 19th century. She wants to pursue a career as an artist and rejects marriage and motherhood, until she meets the charismatic young professor Philip Ostrander. Phelps’s novel is a beautifully-written examination of the conflicts between marriage and career for women that is still relevant today.

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A Spring Hike

A Spring Hike by Mike Bozart

A Spring Hike by Mike Bozart

While hiking near Ridgecrest (NC) in 2004, the author realizes that it is only a matter of time before his (1st) marriage fails.

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Mrs. Armytage

Mrs. Armytage by Catherine Grace Frances Gore

Mrs. Armytage by Catherine Grace Frances Gore

Mrs Armytage is a widowed landowner, spirited, independent and very much used to having her own way and exercising total dominance over her family. She is acutely aware of social distinctions, proud of her power and prestige, and stands on her dignity to the point of becoming cold, judgmental and aloof. Her character flaws bring her into conflict with her children when her son Arthur announces his choice of a wife who is very much below their rank, and much will happen before Mrs Armytage learns to repent her behavior.

Mrs Catherine Gore was foremost among the writers of ‘Silver Fork’ or ‘fashionable’ novels, hugely popular in the early 1800s, which chronicle the romances and scandals of the upper classes during the Regency period. Her writing drew criticism from her contemporaries for being rather superficial, but even her critics acknowledged her often brilliant characterization and gift for satire. In the present day, when Regency romances have become so popular, Mrs Gore is long overdue for a revival, and ‘Mrs Armytage’, one of her best works, offers rich rewards to the reader.

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The Pride of Jennico

The Pride of Jennico by Egerton Castle

The Pride of Jennico by Egerton Castle

The death of a patriarch, unexpected inheritance of a second son, dark and stormy castle, faithful retainers, scary governess who never speaks, star-crossed lovers — I could go on, but that would involve spoilers! All you’d want and expect from a Gothic romance. One more thing — real men do cry!

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The First Violin

The First Violin by Jessie Fothergill

The First Violin by Jessie Fothergill

May Wedderburn is a quiet provincial girl, living in small and seemingly boring Skernford. Underneath the dull exterior, there is mystery, suspicion and fear in this little town, surrounding the austere local wealthy landowner who is very interested in marrying poor May. It looks as though she will have to marry him whether she likes it or not until an unsuspected alliance is formed between her and a respected old lady. They both escape to Germany where music and excitement await them.

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Lizzie Leigh

Lizzie Leigh by Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

Lizzie Leigh by Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

A poignant tale about illicit love, regret ending in delight. It deals with the story of a young girl Lizzie who commits a sin and its repercussions. Gaskell brilliantly portraits the deep and true relations of a family and ends the story with a moving reunion. Touching and emotional!

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A Lover’s Diary

A Lover's Diary by Gilbert Parker

A Lover's Diary by Gilbert Parker

A collection of rather besotted love sonnets by Gilbert Parker, written early in his career, with an accompanying interesting and someone apologetic Introduction by the author himself. Sir Gilbert Parker, as he came to be known, went on to become politically active, as well as a great story-teller, prolific novelist, and mature poet, centering his stories in the area of Quebec, Canada.

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You Didn’t Care

You Didn't Care by Santosh Jha

You Didn't Care by Santosh Jha

Most men want their women bare. However, when women decide to unclothe their consciousnesses off the suffocating fabric of procrastination, men run away. A young woman, abandoned by her lover, bares it all for her ‘ex’ to see through. Because, she still loves him. Men need be in apt audience as a woman resonates her bosom baritone. A ‘neurotic’ woman’s monologue, men need to engage with.

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