Quote Originally Posted by Old Hack View Post
What about Vilette, by that Bronte woman (I can never remember which one, I'm embarrassed to say). It's not widely read and while it's flawed, it's interesting. Or Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne. Complex and odd and way ahead of its time.
Yes! I second Villette. That is actually my favorite novel, and I reread it almost every year.

Quote Originally Posted by blacbird View Post
Well into Villette now, and find it satisfactory. Bronte is a strong writer, and much less prolix than is the reputation of many Victorian novelists. So far, the story is very episodic, but the episodes are good and engaging. Reminds me some of E. Montgomery's work in that regard. A second plus is that je parle le français un peu, and as the novel takes place mostly in France, there is a fair amount of French dialogue.

caw
Will be interested to hear what you think when you're done, blac. And now I'm getting a hankering to get to my own re-read of it again...

Once you are done, if you are looking for more recommendations, what about Nietzsche's Thus Spoke Zarathustra? Or Siddhartha by Herman Hesse. (I seem to be on a philosophical bent here with my recs tonight.)

I have North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell on my "to be read" docket this year.