I’m trying to read some Christmas stories to get in the mood for the season and I’ve had this book, aptly titled Christmas Stories, waiting for me since I saw O’s postings last year, and I decided to order it immediately. It’s a lovely collection of stories, mostly from classic authors like Dickens, Gogol, Trollope, Tolstoy, Cather, etc. The Story of the Goblins Who Stole the Sexton is the first story in the collection and it goes like this …
Lily returns to New York only to find that her aunt Peniston has died. During the reading of the will, Lily is expected to inherit her aunt’s fortune but Mrs. Peniston has been displeased with Lily’s European travels and perhaps with her behaviour as a whole and has left the bulk of her money to Grace Stepney, giving Lily only ten thousand dollars. The shock is again born with a resignation by Lily.
Lily awakes the next morning still exhausted but with a clearer view of her circumstances. Gus Trenor would need to be repaid the nine thousand dollars he has given her and she feels a tired weariness at her predicament. “She was realizing for the first time that a woman’s dignity may cost more to keep up than her carriage; and that the maintenance of a moral attribute should be dependent on dollars and cents, made the world appear a more sordid place than she had conceived it.”
Lily is rather bored at her aunt’s place but is resisting the invitations to Bellomont because of Gus Trenor’s over-familiarity with her. In a shop, she encounters Gertie Farish, and when Miss Farish tells of the needs of a charitable organization which she supports, in a outpouring of philanthropy, Lily contributes to her cause which gives her a new sensation:
Oh goodness, sorry everyone! While I was initially ahead, now I’m running a bit behind with housing renos gone wrong, and time spent helping friends who are having some health problems. I’m planning to catch right up this weekend! Okay, here is week two:
Are you ready? Have you been reading? The House of Mirth Read-along begins!
In The Theory of Love (Part II), Fromm now moves on to the desire of men and women for love or union. Fromm claims we search for this union both within and without as we are bisexual psychologically and it is a way to find union with ourselves as well as another.
Hmmm …. this is interesting. When I first read this book it was like I was having an epiphany but with my second read through it, it’s not grasping me like it did the first time. Have I matured? Have Fromm’s ideas already percolated? Were Lewis’ descriptions of the different loves more enlightening and deeply resonating? I’m not sure, but on we go!
Well, true to my promise, I’m going ahead with The House of Mirth Read-Along which will run from November 1 – December 15th. I’m giving everyone a little extra time for the read, hoping that: 1) it will give me a gentler transition from The Art of Loving Read-Along and allow me more time to create my posts and; 2) spread the read-along out for participants so they can fit some Christmas books into the mix. I hope it works.