Mama Deb (mamadeb) wrote,
Mama Deb
mamadeb

Children's books

Last week, jonbaker pointed me to ManyBooks.net, a site that provides public domain books formatted for the PDA in all the popular readers, including iSilo. All they ask is a small donation if you feel like it.

I downloaded two books - Frances Hodgson Burnett's A Little Princess and Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre. Both are childhood favorites of mine and I haven't read either in years. It turns out I have an evil mind, but you pretty much knew that.

In the not-evil department - Sara Crewe receives a package towards the end of the book addressed to "The Little Girl in the Right-Hand Attic." Jane Eyre is the unwanted dependent upon her mother's sister-in-law, bullied by her greedy, obese and extremely spoiled cousin, and she longs to go to school to escape things. And Aunt Reed talks about her Eyre relatives in much the same way the Dursleys spoke about the Potters.

Harry Potter has a long list of literary peers, doesn't he? And, you know - Jane might have made an excellent witch - and somehow, I think, Slytherin, too. Hmmm.

In the evil department - the major turning point in A Little Princess is that her father was seemingly conned into buying into a diamond scam and losing anything - and conned by a close friend from school. This turns out to be not true, and they were actually quite successful. The friend *loves* Captain Crewe (this is the term used) and is called his "intimate friend" and when Crewe dies, the friend, also ill, does not recover out of grief. He spends his money searching for his dear friend's daughter, whom, when he finds her, he has call him "Uncle Tom."

And my mind, in reading this innocent children's book, is now seeing Carrisford and Crewe together, renewing a relationship that began in Eton, ended when they left and then Crewe (but not Carrisford) married, losing his wife in childbirth. And then they meet again and it is so sad and romantic and I'm evil. :)
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