1984, by George Orwell: the forces of the Party against the forces of humanity

Some expressions coined by George Orwell in 1984 are so well-known today that I had a familiar feeling when finally, I started reading this novel. I had already read about the principles of Newspeak (the absolute opposite of what writers work for and what readers appreciate) and of course I knew that 1984 was where … Continue reading 1984, by George Orwell: the forces of the Party against the forces of humanity

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Mrs Dalloway, by Virginia Woolf: on madness, regrets, and the elusive quality of time

There are several forces at work in Virginia Woolf's Mrs Dalloway, forces opposing one another or complementing each other, which makes of Virginia Woolf's most popular novel a shining object of endless fascination, throwing its multiple and multicoloured sparkles in all directions, so that it is impossible to fully grasp the extent of Mrs Dalloway's depth … Continue reading Mrs Dalloway, by Virginia Woolf: on madness, regrets, and the elusive quality of time

Sense and Sensibility, by Jane Austen: feeling, screaming and screening, in a stifling society

Spoiler alert: I'll assume that I'm among the last people on Earth to read Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility, and that everyone is aware of the plot (if only thanks to the movie!). This review contains mild spoilers (but if you know Jane Austen, you know that most of the time, 'all is well that ends well'). … Continue reading Sense and Sensibility, by Jane Austen: feeling, screaming and screening, in a stifling society

Girl Meets Boy, by Ali Smith: about imagination and gender fluidity

Ali Smith wrote Girl Meets Boy more than ten years ago, in 2007, and it was my first introduction to her writing, again thanks to Canongate Books. A rewriting of one of Ovid's most joyful metamorphosis, Girl Meets Boy adds to this mythological story a modern perspective which gives yet another depth to the myth of Iphis … Continue reading Girl Meets Boy, by Ali Smith: about imagination and gender fluidity

White Teeth, by Zadie Smith: fundamental interrogations on the fundamentals

I think it is a secret for no one here that I love Zadie Smith. I admire her wit, her style, her sense of humour, her cleverness and sagacity. I'm in awe at the fact that she began her career as a writer in her early twenties, and that her first novel, White Teeth,  was none … Continue reading White Teeth, by Zadie Smith: fundamental interrogations on the fundamentals