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Re: CHAT: Czech please or Czech Please

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  • Melvyn
    ... Hello Zuzka, Me, I ve been on my hols in the Giant Mountains. Passed through your neck of the woods. Very nice area. ... Okay. Melodrama plus folk
    Message 1 of 18 , Aug 14, 2013
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      --- In Czechlist@yahoogroups.com, Zuzana Benesova <czechlist@...> wrote:
      > These past two weeks were a blur.

      Hello Zuzka,

      Me, I've been on my hols in the Giant Mountains. Passed through your neck of the woods. Very nice area.

      >The melodrama is a big part of it.

      Okay. Melodrama plus folk narrative. Reminds me of Erben.

      >Obsessed with
      traveling to distant places to the point of begging for money. Nearly :-)

      A nineteenth century Kerouac? Check out George Borrow. The Romany Rye. He was restless and travelled to exotic places with the Romani, learning their language among many others. Still popular when I was young but now strangely neglected.


      >>short stories by
      > (amongst others) Mona Caird, Ella Hepworth Dixon, Edith Arnold, George
      > Egerton and `Iota' would reach a popular market."

      >Interesting. Going on my own to-do list. What would you recommend for a starter?

      My guess is that they all have something to offer. I enjoy just reading down the contents pages and imagining the stories. :-) This is a problem of mine. I am not a fast reader because I am a dreadful day-dreamer. I often just read a couple of pages and then spend all my time imagining how the story will continue.

      Actually, Michal Ajvaz once wrote a short story that just consisted of a contents page for an imaginary novel with chapter titles that suggested strange and gripping twists and turns. Best novel I have never read.

      Anyway, having dipped into several of them, I hesitate to tell you my favourite :-) as my tastes are probably a bit off the beaten track. For example, I got into an early 19th century science fiction work by Jane Loudon (nee Webb) entitled The Mummy, set in the 22nd century, which will not be everybody's cup of tea. Similarities with Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and her post-apocalyptical The Last Man (which I also enjoyed).

      "The ladies were all arrayed in loose trowsers, over which hung
      drapery in graceful folds; and most of them carried on their heads,
      streams of lighted gas forced by capillary tubes, into plumes, fleurs de-lis, or in short any form the wearer pleased; which jets de feu had an uncommonly chaste and elegant effect."

      Mail is delivered by cannon balls, which are shot into large nets erected in each village. Your original net-based hotmail - probably more reliable too.

      When an agricultural and horticultural expert read her futuristic description of a steam lawn mower and a mechanical milking machine he tracked her down and proposed to her. Name of Loudon. So she ended up writing gardening books.

      Mona Caird writes with verve and vigour. I got into her Romance of the Moors and am very much enjoying it. None of those silly bonnet fixations or shadowy servants without first names:

      "A maid-servant going up the street with a
      parcel from the grocer's, glanced admiringly
      at the stalwart young farmer. The Doctor
      caught the glance and smiled, though not
      without a faint pang of envy far away down
      in his soul. The young fellow was aggres-
      sively handsome, while Dr. Hislop was fair,
      irregular of feature and put together in-
      accurately."

      Top-notch writing. Makes me wonder just how many non-canon ripping yarns are waiting out there to be discovered.

      A couple of recommended pdfs will be cannonballing their way to you in the not too remote future.

      So okay next on my list is definitely something exotic and Freudian by Julius Zeyer. Kate Bush will just have to wait a little longer.

      Regards,

      Melvyn
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