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Showing posts from January, 2016

My review of two plays in one novel, The Sellwood Girls and When Queen Victoria Came to Tea by Margaret Crompton

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'The Sellwood Girls': Emily, Anne and Louisa Sellwood were born and brought up in Horncastle, Lincolnshire. Their father was a solicitor. Their mother died soon after Louisa was born and an unmarried Franklin aunt came to care for the children. In 1827, the girls attended a boarding school in Brighton. Emily and Louisa married the Tennyson brothers Alfred and Charles, who grew up in Somersby in the Lincolnshire Wolds.  Anne married Charles Weld. Their stories are characterised by hope and anxiety, love and loss, delight and despair, illness, guilt and, eventually, reconciliation. These stories emerge throughout the play. Hallam Tennyson (son of Alfred and Emily) is completing a submission to a playwriting event at the University of The Wolds - 'Bring-along-a-script, ' In seeking to give a voice to his mother and aunts, he finds a voice for himself. Hallam imagines the 3 sisters together in the garden of their boarding school in Brighton, 1827. He becomes …

Author interview with Marion Dell discussing her latest book, Virginia Woolf's Influential Forebears Julia Margaret Cameron, Anny Thackeray Ritchie, Julia Prinsep Stephen

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I am so thrilled and deeply honored to bring you an interview I conducted with Marion Dell. Thanks to  Pan Macmillan UK, I was able to reach out to her, introduce myself, tell her how much I enjoyed, 'Influential Forebears'. She could not have been more gracious and kind. Later on, to my delight, she also agreed to an interview. I sent her my questions concerning her focus on the novels of Virginia Woolf, and those related to and closely engaged in her circle. For instance, Julia Margaret Cameron, Anny Thackeray Ritchie, and Virginia Woolf's mother, Julia Prinsep Stephen.



<----Julia Margaret Cameron in 1860s

 ===> Anny Thackeray Ritchie in 1867 a photograph taken by Julia Margaret Cameron.


Center below is the most recognizable face of the beautiful woman, Julia Prinsep Stephen. A photograph taken by Julia Margaret Cameron in 1867.


 1) I love how your focus is on the family and the family connection. Can you explain why those three women: Julia Margaret Cameron, Anny …

On my To Be Read List is Sleeper's Castle by Barbara Erskine

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One of my absolute favorite authors is Barbara Erskine. Ever since I read Lady of Hay in 1996 I was hooked. I have devoured every single book she's written since. Although, this is not specifically a nineteenth-century novel or Victorian era for that matter; I am including it here anyway. Isn't this a gorgeous cover!  I hope you will buy it upon its U.K. publication in June 2016.  Here are the details so far:

Two women, centuries apart. One endless nightmare tearing Wales apart – and only they can stop it.

Sunday Times bestselling author Barbara Erskine returns to Hay in the year that marks the 30th anniversary of her sensational debut bestseller, Lady of Hay.


Hay-On-Wye, 1400 – War is brewing in the Welsh borders, Catrin is on the brink of womanhood and falling in love for the first time. Her father is a soothsayer, playing a dangerous game playing on the mixed loyalties and furious rivalries between welsh princes and English lords. For two hundred years, the Welsh people have …

My review of Lewis Carroll Photography on the Move by Lindsay Smith

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Though he is now known primarily as the author of the Alice books, in his lifetime Lewis Carroll was interested at least as much in photography as in writing. Though he remains one of Victorian culture’s most prominent and compelling figures, few readers have had the chance to explore the extent of his passion for photography, a new technology that was gaining popularity during his lifetime. Lewis Carroll: Photography on the Move follows the journey of Carroll’s photography in tandem with his writing. Beginning in the glass studio Carroll had built above his college rooms at Christ Church, Oxford, this book traces his fascination for photographs through his visits to London theatres, his annual trips to the seaside town of Eastbourne and his extraordinary excursion to Russia in 1867. Many of the preoccupations that make Carroll’s writing so remarkable are also present in his photography, particularly his interest in the boundless imaginations of children. Carroll was also…