'How pleasant it is to spend an evening in this way! I declare that after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book! — When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.' No one made any reply. She then yawned again, threw aside her book, and cast her eyes round the room in quest of some amusement. — from Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen (1775-1817)
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February 26, 2015

#6barsets: The Warden




As I've mentioned, I've made a plan {and found lovely friends to read with!} to read all six of Anthony Trollope's Barsetshire novels, one every two months, in this bicentennial year. I'll be re-reading the first two -- The Warden (1855) and Barchester Towers (1857) -- mostly to remember the characters and what happens to them, and I'm not sure how much more I'll have to say about them. So far, I'm just adding to my deep and great enjoyment. :) 

I've reminded myself who we meet in this first Barsetshire novel (Reverend Harding, his daughters, the Bishop, the Archdeacon, the reform-minded John Bold) and what changes are wrought for some of them.  And in re-reading Victoria Glendinning's wonderful biography of Trollope {set aside the last few weeks, but not forgotten ... it's just that another, unexpectedly and equally wonderful biography in the form of a non-renewable library book has temporarily stolen my heart} I've been learning about how much he put himself and his experiences into his books; it's been a little bit like a treasure hunt to see those things emerge in this novel. I did read that The Warden was Trollope's fourth published novel, and the first to show him  a glimmer of success.

But, alas, lots of snow and lots going on work has meant that February was a little overwhelming, and I'm finding myself quite unable to string two thoughts together to share at the moment. A quiet, peaceful, surprisingly moving, surprisingly funny book like this one was lovely to spend time with, and I can't wait to start Barchester Towers (another re-read) for March and April.  

Let's let each other know about Trollope reading this year!  (I'll share links,}

{A lovely cathedral close, found here}

7 comments:

Lisa said...

I don't know if I have ever read The Warden on its own, without going straight on to Barchester Towers. Now that I've given up the TBR dare, I don't have to wait til April to join in :)

Frances said...

I was so tempted to join in when you started and then something happened and I didn't. And now I'm sorely tempted again. I can catch up, right?

Audrey said...

Yes, please, whenever! It will be lovely to read with both of you.

Anbolyn said...

I read a big chunk of Barchester Towers a few years ago and never finished it. I should dust it off and try again!

JoAnn said...

I reread The Warden last month (finally working on a post now!) and am all set to go with Barchester Towers. The Glendinning bio has been untouched lately, but beginning BT will certainly inspire me to pick it up again.

I can't blame my February reading slump on the horrible snow and cold, so will attribute it to missing Trollope ;-)

Karen K. said...

I loved The Barchester series -- I found The Warden to be a bit slow but worth sticking with. The series really takes off with BT and I just loved Doctor Thorne. I've also read several of Trollope's stand-alone novels and the first of the Pallisers, so I want to get to Phineas Finn next.

I don't know if you're aware but I'm hosting a Trollope Bicentennial event during the entire month of April -- with giveaways! I'll basically be posting links to anything Trollopian. Please join in if you like!

Vintage Reading said...

Will be following your Trollope posts with interest, Audrey, and at some point will dip my toe in. I've heard so many good things about this writer.

Thank you for visiting!

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