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The Kleist does get another meaning when you know about his death, right? These trials by ordeal must have been very ghastly.
Kleist has a violent imagination. This wasn't my favourite of his novels but it's a good one.
I have still not read Hardy although Emma and Guy are reading all of his novels and are full of praise. I'm convinced I wouldn't like him but it seems he's not always as dark as in Tess.
I've read a few of Gogol's shorter works but I'm not sure about this one.


I *loved* The Eternal Husband - highly recommended for your next read!


The Hardy sounds excellent. My Hardy experience is even more limited than yours. One short story, which actually may have come from a novel now I think about it. It was about a couple strolling along a Cornish cliff, when the chap fell over the edge. Talk about dramtic... and beautifully written. I thought then that I must read more but like you have been rather put off by the depressing reputation of his books. I need to be stronger than this! LOL Oh, I have seen a couple of BBC dramas which I also liked a lot.


Such an interesting variety of novellas! I guess the pairings don't really have anything to do with each other? That would have been interesting but I guess too much to hope for really.


I had to dig very deep but remembered having seen a play by Von Kleist (The Broken Jug)long ago and I remember too I liked Gogol's Diary of a Madman. These novellas sound so good.


I remembered that you had read this novella last year but had forgotten about the connection with his death--another writer with an interesting and tragic life! It is only my first taste of his work and I will read more--I didn't think this was considered his best, but I did like it very much--definitely a dark and violent story as you say. I really like Hardy's writing and keep meaning to read more but never seem to get around to it. I think you have to almost be in the right frame of mind. He wrote a novel called Under the Greenwood Tree (something like that anyway), which I have not read but saw a film adaptation and it was quite nice--a happy story and in no way bleak, so I think not all his work is so dark. I think it's cool that Guy and Emma are reading all his work--there are a number of writers I would like to do the same, but I am always moving from one author to the next! This was ny first taste, too of Gogol, but I think again it is not his best work, but I will certainly read more. Didn't he write a novella/short story called The Nose? It was recommended to me as well.


Oh, I am so glad to hear that--the book is sitting on my reading pile, but I was a little uncertain that was what I wanted to read, but you have convinced me to pick it up. It has been a VERY long time since I have read his work!


You are right--that is seriously dramatic! But I like the sound of the Cornish setting! I am not necessarily put off by dark stories--and I know not all his books are dark, so I really must pick up another of his works! This has been a really abysmal year for me when it comes to reading classics--other than my novellas. Oh, and me, too--I have seen a number of BBC productions of his works, too. Surely that must count for something??


Sometimes there is a theme to the month's selections (one month--both had purple covers! HA), but more often than not there is no specific reason for the pairing. I don't mind--lots of Russian authors, however. I am very much enjoying them--the vast number I think I might never have picked up on my own.


I didn't realize he also wrote plays--I wonder what it would have been like? Also dark? The Gogol was a little silly, but I do see the point--it had a lighthearted sort of approach. These novellas have been really great--I am not sure I will catch up with reading all of them by the end of the year, but you never know--and it is fine, too, to carry them over into next year (though I want to continue my subscription then as well).

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