Summer Reading

What are you reading?

I’m a writer.  I believe that reading great books can inspire, encourage, and delight.

For example, I’m reading Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables…all 1463 pages of it!  I’m on page 941 and am hoping to finish the novel this summer.  (I’m not going to confess how long it’s taken me to get to page 941).

"...the poor child, in winter, not yet six years old...sweeping the street before daylight with an enormous broom I her little red hands and tears in her large eyes."  (Hugo, Les Miserables, page 157).  Will Young Cosette ever be rescued from the cruel innkeepers?

“…the poor child, in winter, not yet six years old…sweeping the street before daylight with an enormous broom in her little red hands and tears in her large eyes.” (Hugo, Les Miserables, page 157).

Yeah, it’s really long.  Hugo didn’t read all the “modern rules of writing.”  There are times I’m thinking “hurry-up, let’s get on with the story – I don’t really care about the alley, the king, or the history of the abbey.”  Guess what!  Those chapters that seem “semi-useless” weave into the story and present a better picture of the society, the history of a new character, or details to enhance the plot.

I’m not going to write a book review or report or recommendation at this time.  I’m just going to say: reading classic literature is an adventure.  I’ve been wandering the streets and alleys of Paris  in the pages of the Hugo’s novel and I didn’t have to buy a plane ticket or “time travel.”

So, what classic literature or historical fiction are you reading this summer?  What adventures are you experiencing through the pages of a great novel?

Happy Summer…Happy Reading!

Your Historian,

Miss Sarah

About Sarah Kay Bierle

I’m Sarah Kay Bierle, historian, editor, and historical fiction writer. When sharing history, I try to keep the facts interesting and understandable. History is about real people, real actions, real effects and it should inspire us today.
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4 Responses to Summer Reading

  1. Josiah Bierle says:

    I’m reading Beowulf right now. It’s short, but about as old and classic as it gets. Have fun with Les Miserables. I’ll go for the shorter stuff first!

    • skbierle says:

      Oh, yes, “Beowulf”…very heroic and little gory. I remember liking the cultural information, such as the feast hall, the weapons, etc. That old Anglo-Saxon stuff is interesting.
      Thanks for commenting, Josiah.

  2. Zachary Snowdon Smith says:

    “Les Misérables” can make a reader more or less immune to intimidation by very long, tangent-riddled books.

    This summer (winter in Australia), I’m reading Kafka’s “The Castle.”

    • skbierle says:

      Zachary, thanks for the comment!
      Your insight on becoming “less immune to intimidation by very long…books” made me laugh. It’s very true.
      Happy winter reading “down south.”

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