Monday, 24 January 2011

Blog Tour: Jillian Larkin's Top 10 Books from the 1920s (Part 1)

Today, we're excited to welcome Jillian Larkin to the blog! I LOVED Vixen (review here) so I'm super happy we were asked to join the blog tour!

Without further ado, here's the post!

Jillian Larkin’s Top 10 Favorite Books from the 1920s, Part 1

1) So Big by Edna Ferber

Selina Peake De Jong, the protagonist of this wonderful novel, is one of my favorite characters of all time.  She’s a wonderful teacher and when her husband dies, she goes out to work on the farm to give her son, Dirk, a real future.  She appreciates art and beauty and encourages her son to follow his dreams rather than focus solely on making money.  As a bonus, in the 1932 film version of the novel, former flapper extraordinaire Barbara Stanwyck plays Selina!

2) Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

Here’s a warning: Many of you budding English majors out there will be assigned to read this book any time the term “stream-of-consciousness” comes up in class.  And you might hate it.  But I can’t help but feel I’m witnessing something beautiful and heartbreaking each time I open my dog-eared copy and by the third paragraph, with “What a lark! What a plunge,” I’m falling into the fascinating Clarissa Dalloway’s past friendships and romances.  

3) Twilight Sleep by Edith Wharton

I only recently found out Edith Wharton wrote her own satirical take on the 1920s.  So of course I picked up a copy right away and tore through it.  I’m so in awe of Wharton’s writing style.  In this novel, she makes many sharp observations about the differences between youth and adulthood, and how little any of us truly knows ourselves.  She manages the very difficult task of ridiculing her characters at every turn, yet still making them compelling and relatable, if not exactly likable.  

4) Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh

Okay, this was technically published in 1930.  But it is, in my opinion, an absolutely hilarious commentary on the smart set of the Jazz Age.  If you absolutely have to be attached to the characters to get through a book, this may not be the novel for you.  The characters have depth that is more akin to puddles than oceans.  But it is so funny.  It makes light of near-death experiences, war, marriage, and just about every other serious issue.

5) The Beautiful and the Damned by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Upon my fifth or sixth reading of The Great Gatsby, I realized that it might be a good idea to take a look at the other books Fitzgerald had written.  And I am so glad I did.  In ways, it’s a similar novel to Gatsby.  It deals with the triumphs, tragedies, and overall self-involvement of the privileged.  But it gets into the meat of a marriage with the relationship between Anthony and Gloria—a marriage not unlike Scott’s to Zelda Fitzgerald.  This book is also where my Gloria got her name.

Hope you enjoyed hearing about some of my favorite 1920s classics.  Stop by Daisy Book Chain Reviews ( tomorrow to see Part 2 of the list! 

Want to learn more about Vixen, see the trailer and play games? Go to Vixen's website!

Want to keep following the tour?

Thursday: Teen Reads

Thanks so much for stopping by Jillian!


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