An unabashed post of self-congratulation marking the fact that I’ve now been blogging since 2011, starting on my old site Laura Reading Books and moving here in 2015. One favourite post per year!
Thomas Hardy backwards: escaping one’s fate [a range of Thomas Hardy novels], August 2011. ‘I can’t think of almost all the remaining cast drowning in the weir at the end of The Return of the Native without smiling’.
A Game of Thrones: Catelyn and Arya Stark [A Song of Ice and Fire by George R. R. Martin], April 2012. ‘Martin shows us how a desire for justice can be distorted into a desire for vengeance, when life becomes too cruel for mercy’. (If you want to read more of my thoughts on A Song of Ice and Fire, my other essays on Cat, Arya and Sansa are linked here. These essays also drew the most traffic to my blog ever!).
Laura Rereading: Theories about fear [The Spell of the Sorcerer’s Skull by John Bellairs], February 2013. ‘what I think Bellairs did teach me – and what he still does exceptionally well – is how to scare’.
All this buttoning and unbuttoning [Her by Harriet Lane], April 2014. “if Frances… was, as she put it, ‘making pastry’ as she inveigled her way into Alys’s old life, Nina is making choux buns to Frances’s shortcrust, so lightly and imperceptibly does she trouble Emma.”
Laura Rereading: ‘I belong to him’ [the Emily of New Moon series by L.M Montgomery], June 2015. ‘Emily’s Quest is not a novel about an obsessive lover getting in the way of true, pure love. It’s a novel about obsessive love, full stop’.
‘My child and my child’s child’ [The Testament of Jessie Lamb by Jane Rogers and The Ship by Antonia Honeywell], January 2016. “[Jessie’s] father tries to talk her out of her decision: ‘The future is an abstract concept, Jess’. But Jessie can’t believe this: ‘No, it’s my child and my child’s child’.”
Rewatching ‘San Junipero’: the black mirror [Black Mirror TV series], January 2017. ‘because of San Junipero, [Kelly] can have a second life as a young woman, in love with another young woman. She can be ‘normal’ and ‘transgressive’ at the same time. She can have it all, but only after she’s dead’.
Bookworm, Or I Wish I’d Written This [Bookworm by Lucy Mangan], May 2018. ‘I knew that Betsy was made up, so why was she mentioned in another book? HOW HAD THIS HAPPENED?’
Sex, the sea and academia: Night Waking (Sarah Moss) & The Pisces (Melissa Broder), May 2019. “If Lucy’s Tinder profile says ‘Let’s make out in a dark alley’, Anna’s would probably say ‘Please leave me alone in a dark bedroom’.”
Have any of you written lists of your own favourite posts by yourself, or have favourite posts of your own to recommend?