Monday, 6 October 2008
A happy ending
How many of you watched "Tess" last night? How many of you watched "Tess" last night knowing the inevitable outcome and still wishing for a happy ending? I watched in spite of myself. hoping that the ending I'd read and seen before had been untrue that somehow the Beeb would magic up the ending that we all wanted ... I cry at most things and my family have got use to watching me blub just as my parents use to watch me sob at the end of every episode of "The Waltons" or "Little House on the Prairie". I now have another crying partner - Big Sister. We sat watching as the bleak inevitable heartbreaking ending unfurled and crumpled. An hour later when I went to bed still thinking of "what might have been" Big Sister was still crying in her bed. Some stories just haunt you, I don't think that crying is a bad thing. I don't think that reading stories that don't have the happy ending is a bad thing. Some of the most beautiful books I have ever read have not ended the way that the romantic in me wanted and perhaps that's what makes them so beautiful and great and haunting.
I was lucky enough to find another copy of this book this weekend. This was one of the first Persephone books I read and I wrote about it here. Again this book haunts me, it is harrowing, achingly sad and yet gripping from start to finish. Even Mr Ragged Roses has agreed to dip his toes into Persephone waters by agreeing to read this one. If you would like to win this copy of the book, please let me know and leave a comment. It is a secondhand copy but still in good condition. I shall put names into a hat, I think a pretty, frivolous bonnet would be best to add some levity to the matter.
The Persephone book I am reading at the moment "The Fortnight in September" (which I did intend to finish in September) will I hope provide me with a good gentle happy ending. I am really loving this book (look at the dahlias on the endpapers and bookmark, aren't they delicious). It seems to be so lovingly written, telling the story of a family off on their annual fortnight's holiday to Bognor Regis on the coast. I am lost in the details and descriptions and go to bed each night reading of beach huts, ginger ale, walks on the Downs, ordinary people living ordinary lives, nothing dramatic but very entertaining. There's only so much blubbing this girl can take!