Tuesday, December 29, 2015

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: Mystery in White

Hello, and welcome to First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea, where bloggers share the opening of a book they're reading or planning to read soon.

I've been reading selections that have a holiday theme. Next on my list is Mystery in White by J. Jefferson Farjeon (originally published in 1937). I'm really enjoying the books that are part of the British Library Crime Classics series.

From the back cover:

"On Christmas Eve, heavy snowfall brings a train to a halt near the village of Hemmersby. Several passengers take shelter in a deserted country house where the fire has been lit and the table laid for tea--but no one is at home. 

Trapped together for Christmas, the passengers are seeking to unravel the secrets of the empty house when a murderer strikes in their midst."

The opening:

"The Great Snow began on the evening of December 19th. Shoppers smiled as they hurried home, speculating on the chances of a White Christmas. Their hopes were dampened when they turned on their wireless to learn from the smooth impersonal voice of the B.B.C. announcer that an anti-cyclone was callously wending its way from the North-West of Ireland; and on the 20th the warmth arrived, turning the snow to drizzle and the thin white crust to muddy brown."

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

All the best for a Happy New Year!

Friday, December 25, 2015

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: High Rising by Angela Thirkell

Hello and welcome to First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea where bloggers share a bit about what they're reading or planning to read soon.

I've been away from my blog for awhile, trying to get over a sinus infection. The hardest part has been wanting to read but not being able to concentrate. I'm feeling much better and looking forward to getting back to reading.

This month I've read a couple of books on my list with a Christmas theme--a children's book, I Saw Three Ships by Elizabeth Goudge, and a serious novel, The Very Dead of Winter by Mary Hocking. Next on my list is High Rising by Angela Thirkell (1933). I've read the first chapter and can tell that High Rising is going to be fun. Thirkell's writing reminds me a bit of Barbara Pym but with the wit of Nancy Mitford.

From the back cover:

"Successful novelist Laura Morland and her boisterous son Tony set off to spend Christmas at her country home in the sleepy surrounds of High Rising. But Laura's wealthy friend and neighbour George Knox has taken on a scheming secretary whose designs on marriage to her employer threaten the delicate social fabric of the village. Can clever, practical Laura rescue George from Miss Grey's clutches and, what's more, help his daughter Miss Sibyl Knox to secure her longed-for engagement?"

The opening:


The Prizegiving

The headmaster's wife twisted herself round in her chair to talk to Mrs. Morland, who was sitting in the row just behind her.

"I can't make out,' she said reflectively, 'why all the big boys seem to be at the bottom of preparatory schools and the small ones at the top. All those lower boys who got prizes were quite large, average children, but when we get to the upper forms they all look about seven, and undersized at that. Look at the head of the Remove for instance--he is just coming up the platform steps now.'"

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

I hope that you have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Friday, December 11, 2015

Have A Lovely Weekend.

John Henry Twachtman, Winter Harmony, c. 1890/1900
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: The Very Dead of Winter

Happy Tuesday! I'm participating in First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea, where bloggers share a bit about what they're reading or planning to read. It's a fun way to see what other people are reading. I'm starting the first of some holiday reading with The Very Dead of Winter by Mary Hocking (1993).

The opening:

"The beginning of the journey had been quite enchanting. Porcelain blue sky and the sparkling white canopy transformed dingy streets into fantasies of unimaginable purity and, passing out of the town, they came to broad fields where sunlight reflected a trellis of branches like veins across the snow. But as they drove, the small towns and villages, the farms, field and hedgerows blurred, became intermittently discernible, and finally dissolved and there was only a moving whiteness against a grey background, as if a great speckled blind were being drawn endlessly down into a bottomless well."

From the back cover:

"In this haunting novel, echoing mystery play and fairy tale, a family is forced to confront the grievances and emotional confusions of their shared past. In the very dead of winter they assemble at a remote country cottage enveloped by snow. Ostensibly they are celebrating Christmas, but festivities are marred by the presence of Konrad, who is dying. Florence, his manipulative wife, views Konrad's imminent death with annoyance; their two grown-up children bear the scars of this imperfect union. At the heart of this novel is Sophia, Florence's unorthodox sister and their host, who seems able to stand aside from family combat, yet guards a secret that has relevance for them all."

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

Friday, December 4, 2015

Have A Lovely Weekend.

John Singer Sargent, Simpion Pass, 1911
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
From the Corcoran Collection (Bequest of James Parmelee)

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: Black Ship by Carola Dunn

Happy Tuesday and Happy December 1! Today, I'm taking part in First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea, where bloggers share a bit about a book they're reading or thinking of reading soon.

My reading plans for December have to do with some mysteries and some light reading. I came across a Daisy Dalrymple mystery, Black Ship by Carola Dunn, at a book sale recently, and I love the cover. 

The opening:

"A last teeth-ratting sneeze escaped Daisy as she stepped out to the front porch. The tall, spare solicitor, locking the door behind them, gave her a worried look. That is, she thought she detected anxiety, though the layer of dust on his pince-nez obscured his expression."

From Amazon:

"In September 1925, the Honourable Daisy Dalrymple Fletcher, her husband Alec Fletcher (a Scotland Yard detective) and their new twin infant children inherit and move into a new larger house on the outskirts of London proper, in a stage of slight disrepair. Set in a small circle of houses and a communal garden, it seems a near idyllic setting. That is until a dead body turns up half-hidden in the communal garden, rumors of bootlegger, American gangsters, and an international liquor smuggling operation via black ships turns everything upside down. And it's up to Daisy--well, Alec with some help from Daisy--to find out who the dead man is, why he was murdered, and who did him in!"

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Sunday Salutations

Hello and welcome to Sunday Salutations!

I hope that your week has gone well. The photos above are from an October visit to an orchard. I love fall and am looking forward to Thanksgiving. My family is a bit scattered this year, but my mother arrived this week for a visit, which signals the beginning of the holiday season. We've been having fun this weekend, and the weather hasn't been too cold to get out and about.

On the Blog . . .

Here are the posts from this past week:

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: The Square by Rosie Millard

Remarks on Recent Reads: The Procrastinator's Edition

Nonfiction November: The Only Woman in the Room by Rita Lakin

The Friday zen painting was Luxembourg Gardens by William James Glackens (1906).

Also, there has been a small change to my social media buttons. Gone is the link to my Facebook page which I really didn't have time to maintain. Instead, there's a link to my Instagram page. I'm having a lot of fun with Instagram lately.

Reading Plans . . .

Yesterday, I finished Edith Wharton's A Motor-Flight Through France, and I'll have a review soon for this book as well as Charleston Bulletin Supplements by Virginia Woolf and Quentin Bell, both for Nonfiction November. I'm continuing on with my reading plans with Waugh in Abyssinia by Evelyn Waugh.

Around the Blogosphere . . .

Here are some blog posts from this past week which caught my eye:

At I Prefer Reading, Lyn takes a look at some of Charlotte Bronte's poetry.

Over at Bibliophile by the Sea, Diane has a review of a book that I've been curious about, Wildflower by Drew Barrymore.

At The Emerald City Book Review, Lory talks about some interesting fall releases.

I look to JoAnn at Lakeside Musing as the expert on audiobooks, and this week, she recommended some of her favorites in nonfiction.

I've had the Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group on my mind and have noticed several interesting blog posts around the web:

If I could zap myself to London next Thursday night, I'd take a walk with Mrs. Dalloway in this post from Blogging Woolf.

There's a most excellent bookish conversation in the form of a podcast over at Stuck in a Book in which Rachel and Simon discuss lots of books, including Virginia Woolf's fiction and nonfiction in "Tea or Books? #7: Persephone vs. Virago & To The Lighthouse vs. A Room of One’s Own." This had me adding more titles to my TBR list!

I also liked this fascinating interview over at Miranda's Notebook with Vanessa Bell's granddaughter, London designer Cressida Bell. Great photos, too! I really enjoyed this inside look at Bell's work.

How has your week gone in reading? 

I wish you a wonderful week and a Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Have A Lovely Weekend.

William James Glackens, Luxembourg Gardens, 1906
Corcoran Collection (Museum Purchase, William A. Clark Fund)
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Nonfiction November: The Only Woman in the Room by Rita Lakin (2015)

I am one of those people who likes to read the credits after movies and even after television shows. Awhile back, on a Sunday afternoon, I caught the end of an episode of "The Mod Squad." I was curious about who wrote the show, and that was where I first saw Rita Lakin's name as head writer. Then I noticed her memoir on Netgalley and requested a copy.

The Only Woman in the Room is written in a distinctive style. Lakin is always matter of fact as she tells her story. She was a young widow with small children when she decided that she wanted to be a screenwriter. How she started at the bottom as a secretary at a movie studio and worked her way up, eventually becoming a sought after television writer, is a great read. 

Her story takes place against the backdrop of the 1960s when changes were taking place for women. But in Hollywood, the men were still in charge and there were few women writers. Lakin faced challenges trying to navigate those waters. 

At the height of her success, Lakin married a second time. The world may have known her as a successful writer of television shows and television movies, but at home, she endured life with a controlling and abusive husband. Eventually, it took a toll on her career, but Lakin found her way out of the marriage.

Lakin has written a frank memoir with anecdotes, some funny and some appalling, that illustrate the bizarre inter-workings of show business and the difficulties women have faced in Hollywood. In fact, the book has made me see Aaron Spelling in a whole new way. Lakin also shines a light on what it's like to be a writer in Hollywood and how little control writers have over their work. I can only imagine how heartbreaking it must be to watch your story being rewritten and someone else's name put on the script as the writer. 

The only issue I take with The Only Woman in the Room is towards the end of the book, and it's a nit-picky issue. Lakin recounts advice a woman gave her who was a screenwriter in the early days of Hollywood, and Lakin states that she can't recall the woman's name. This was a little frustrating because I love reading about Hollywood's history and especially about the early screenwriters who were women and would love to have known who she spoke to. 

If you like an underdog story, or if you like reading about Hollywood, you'll enjoy The Only Woman in the Room.

These days, Rita Lakin writes mystery novels. I'm not familiar with her books. Are you? 

What nonfiction books have you read lately that you enjoyed?

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Remarks on Recent Reads: The Procrastinator's Edition

It's been awhile since I've done a Remarks on Recent Reads post, and I have no excuse other than I've been procrastinating! Here are some titles that I've read over the past couple of months, all of which I recommend:

The Woman Who Had Imagination by H.E. Bates

I'd heard of H.E. Bates (1905-1974) and even have one of his novels (which I haven't yet read), but I couldn't pass up The Woman Who Had Imagination. I can't recall when I've read such beautiful writing in short stories. Bates' descriptions of gardens and flowers are beautiful and evocative. There are fourteen stories in this collection and several include ninety-three-year-old sprightly Uncle Silas, "as lively and restless as a young colt." There are also stories which take place in the city and illustrate the challenges facing those of the working class, and these stories are quite compelling as well.

I received an electronic copy of this book from Netgalley.

Thirteen Guests by J. Jefferson Farjeon

I'm enjoying these books from the British Library Crime Classics, and Thirteen Guests by J. Jefferson Farjeon (1883-1955) is no exception. I was curious to see if this 1936 crime classic would be totally confusing with so many characters but need not have worried. Farjeon's murder mystery takes place at a country house, Bagley Court, on an autumn weekend. Several events occur which lead to murder, and it's up to Detective Inspector Kendall to uncover secrets, lies and motives. All in all, a fun read. I look forward to reading more novels by Farjeon.

I received an electronic copy of this book from Netgalley.

The Pursuit of Love and Love in a Cold Climate by Nancy Mitford

This lovely edition has been languishing on my bookshelf for far too long. I've read several of Nancy Mitford's novels, but The Pursuit of Love and Love in a Cold Climate are my favorites so far. 

The Pursuit of Love is told from Fanny's point of view. She is a cousin of the eccentric Radlett family of Alconleigh estate, and the story deals primarily with the road to love for the beautiful Linda Radlett. The Radlett family is based upon the Mitfords, and there are some genuinely funny laugh out loud moments.

In Love in a Cold Climate, Fanny is once again the narrator, but this time she tells the story of her distant cousin, Polly Hampton, and Polly's search for love despite the her interfering aristocratic family. Lively and interesting characters, romantic comedy, and a secret make this a fun read.  

This Rough Magic by Mary Stewart

Lucy Waring has come to Corfu to visit her sister and is looking forward to a lovely vacation. When a body washes ashore, Lucy finds herself caught up in a murder mystery as well as romance, but who can she trust? Handsome photographer Godfrey Manning or the dashing and charming Max Gale, son of mysterious actor Sir Julian Gale? 

I'm enjoying making my way through Mary Stewart's novels. There are several elements at work in This Rough Magic that made this such a wonderful book. The writing is so eloquent as always in a Mary Stewart novel. Stewart effectively weaves Shakespeare's The Tempest into the story in an interesting way. Then there is the appearance of a dolphin who becomes important to the plot, and Stewart makes this believable. This Rough Magic is another book I've had for awhile, and I'm so glad I finally read it.

What have you been reading that you recommend?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: The Square

Happy Tuesday! I hope that your week is going well so far. Today I'm participating in First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea, where bloggers share a bit about what they're reading or planning to read soon.

I've been enjoying Nonfiction November, but I'm missing fiction and looking for a little respite. The Square by Rosie Millard (2015) looks like it might be just the thing. 

Of The Square, Goodreads promises "a comic romp featuring the bored, overprivileged and vain London bourgeoisie. Full of controversy, gossip, affairs and drama . . ."

The opening:

"Chapter One Jane

Roberta climbs the steps and rings the door bell. In a disinterested way, she wonders who might answer. Patrick, the dishevelled husband? Jane, the trim, pressurised wife? It certainly will not be 'Boy' George. He will be where he always is. Upstairs, hiding in his room. Trying to squeeze another thirty seconds before being called down for his weekly ordeal."

The opening was taken from a proof copy received from Netgalley.

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

Friday, November 13, 2015

Have A Lovely Weekend.

John La Farge, Flowers on a Window Ledge, c, 1861
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
Corcoran Collection (Museum Purchase, Anna E. Clark Fund)

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Nonfiction November: Walter's War by Walter E. Young

I've been interested in reading about World War I lately. I'm still reading Robert Graves' autobiography, Goodbye to All That. But I received a copy through Netgalley of Walter's War, a memoir of World War I experiences in France of London postman Walter E. Young (1889-1957). 

What intrigued me about Walter's War is that it isn't a book that Young wrote with publication in mind. These are letters and remarkable journal entries that he recorded on paper that weren't found until after his death. 

By all accounts, Young was a quiet and an unassuming man who never spoke about his wartime experiences or his heroic deeds that won him a medal for bravery. It's hard to imagine today when it seems that so many people want their fifteen minutes of fame that there was once a generation who valued privacy and humility.

The writing about the violence of war, the death of so many of Young's friends, and the challenging life in the trenches is frank at times but eloquent at other times. Apart from being a soldier, Young also served as a stretcher-bearer. Young saw some horrible things as a stretcher-bearer, but I appreciated that he told just enough without going into graphic detail. In March 1918, Young was captured by the Germans and served the remainder of the war as a prisoner. 

This memoir deals only with Young's experiences in World War I, but there is a section at the end of the book which provides information about Young's life after the war.

This is a moving memoir that I highly recommend.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Nonfiction November: My Year in Nonfiction

If you'd asked me awhile ago how many nonfiction books I've read this past year, I could have mentioned a few. But I was surprised to see that I'd read ten books. 


Carrington: A Life by Gretchen Holbrook Herzina

Hons and Rebels by Jessica Mitford

The Only Woman in the Room by Rita Lakin (review coming soon)

Savage Beauty: The Life of Edna St. Vincent Millay by Nancy Milford

History/Social History

The Boys in the Boat by Daniel James Brown

Mrs. Woolf and the Servants by Alison Light

My First Time in Hollywood by Cari Beauchamp

Smoke Gets in Your Eyes by Caitlin Doughty

Letters, Etc.

The Bookshop at 10 Curzon Street: Letters between Nancy Mitford and Heywood Hill 1952-1973 by Nancy Mitford and Heywood Hill

Charleston Bulletin Supplements by Virginia Woolf and Quentin Bell (review coming soon)

What is the book you've recommended most?

What is/are your favorite nonfiction read(s) of the year?

What is the topic or type of fiction that you haven't read enough of yet?

I don't really think about categories when I read nonfiction. It has more to do with seeing a book that is about something or someone that looks interesting. That's how I've approached my reading choices for this month as well.

What are you hoping to get out of Nonfiction November?

I'm looking forward to reading some books that I've set aside just for Nonfiction November. Also, I'm excited about concentrating on nonfiction and seeing what everyone else is reading. I'll no doubt be adding even more titles to my TBR pile!

Have A Lovely Weekend.

Winslow Homer, Autumn, 1877
National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: Diary of a Provincial Lady

Happy Tuesday, and welcome to First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros! This weekly event is hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea where bloggers share a bit about what they're reading or planning to read soon.

I've started the satire, Diary of a Provincial Lady by E.M. Delafield (1930), which is a "fictional journal of a middle-class wife and mother with literary aspirations, who is muddling through her relentlessly domestic existence with wit and more than a little ruefulness." The book has been compared to Jane Austen, Barbara Pym, Angela Thirkell and even Erma Bombeck.

Here is the opening:

"November 7th.--Plant the indoor bulbs. Just as I am in the middle of them, Lady Boxe calls. I say, untruthfully, how nice to see her, and beg her to sit down while I just finish the bulbs. Lady B. makes determined attempt to sit down in armchair where I have already placed two bulb-bowls and the bag of charcoal, is headed off just in time, and takes the sofa.

Do I know, she asks, how very late it is for indoor bulbs? September, really, or even October is the time. Do I know that the only really reliable firm for hyacinths is Somebody of Haarlem? Cannot catch the name of the firm, which is Dutch, but reply Yes, I do know, but think it my duty to buy Empire products. Feel at the time, and still think, that this is an excellent reply. Unfortunately Vicky comes into the drawing-room later and says: "O Mummie, are those the bulbs we got at Woolworths?"

What do you think? Would you keep reading?

Monday, November 2, 2015

Nonfiction November: For Consideration

I'm participating in Nonfiction November this year, and these are the books that have jumped out at me. I'm already about 60 pages into the Robert Graves memoir and am really enjoying it. 

How about you? What are you planning to read?

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Sunday Salutations: A Look Back at October

Hello and welcome to Sunday Salutations! October went by in a flash, it seems. I hope that it was a good month for you.

Reading and Blogging . . .

My reading has been sporadic lately. I want to read but haven't been making time for it, and I've really missed not having that time. I also have a list of reviews to write for books I've read going back to September, but I haven't felt particularly motivated to do that, either. Does this ever happen to you? I'm looking to November to change all this.

On the Blog . . .

In October, I participated in the RIP.X Challenge, hosted by the Estella Society, and read The Man in the Picture by Susan Hill and a book of Edith Wharton's ghost stories.

At the end of the month, I had a great time participating in the 1924 Club, hosted by Simon at Stuck in a Book. For this, I read Distressing Dialogues by Nancy Boyd (a.k.a. Edna St. Vincent Millay). I've had so much fun finding out about other great books published in 1924. I have a whole new TBR list!

Coming up in November, I'm taking part in Nonfiction November for the first time, and I'm going to make some decisions today about what I'm planning to read.

This year, I've been reading books for Back to the Classics Challenge, hosted by Karen at Books and Chocolate. This month, I read Broderie Anglais by Violet Trefusis.

Photos . . .

Here are a few images from a recent trip to one of my favorite places, Shaw Orchards in Stewartstown, Pennsylvania:

I hope that you had a wonderful Halloween! Onward to November!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Friday, October 30, 2015

RIP.X Challenge: The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton

I'm finishing off the month with a selection for the RIP.X Challenge.

The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton is a book that's been on my bookshelf for many years, and I'm so glad I finally read it. The book is made up of eleven stories that Wharton wrote at various times in her career. 

The writing is eloquent and subtle, which is what I've come to expect of Wharton, and there's a strong element of psychological suspense at work in these stories. For most of the stories, the setting is a large house where things go bump in the night. Many of the stories occur during autumn or in the dead of winter.  

Of all the stories, two appealed to me the most this week: Afterward and Bewitched. Afterward is the disquieting story of an American couple who take up residence in a country home in England. When the story begins, the husband is missing, and the wife tells of events that have led up to his disappearance and what these events might mean. Is there really a ghost involved in his disappearance, or is something equally sinister at work? How well does she really know her husband?

Bewitched doesn't take place in a big house but on a dreary isolated farm during a snowstorm in Hemlock County. Prudence suspects that her husband Saul is having an affair with the beautiful young Ora Brand, even though Ora died a year ago. Prudence calls three farmers in the community to pay her a visit--Orrin Bosworth, Deacon Hibben, and Sylvester Brand (father of Ora). Prudence explains the situation and that her husband has been meeting Ora in a nearby abandoned shack. At nightfall, when the men leave, they stop by the shack. What happens next is the mystery. Is there ghostly activity there? Is Saul really seeing a dead woman or her sister who is very much alive?

This is a collection of stories that I look forward to reading again. When I do, one of the other stories will probably catch my fancy. I highly recommend The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton, especially on a stormy night. 

Thursday, October 29, 2015

The 1924 Club: Distressing Dialogues by Nancy Boyd

I'm taking part in the 1924 Club hosted by Simon over at Stuck in a Book where participants are reading books published in 1924. My 1924 selection is Distressing Dialogues by Nancy Boyd. 

When I read Nancy Milford's biography of the poet Edna St. Vincent Millay earlier this year, I found out about Millay's book of prose, Distressing Dialogues, and became curious. Then, a little over a month ago when I was at Millay's home, Steepletop, I caught a glimpse of Distressing Dialogues on a table in her library. I was told by the guide that Millay chose to write her prose under a pen name because she didn't want to jeopardize her reputation as a poet.

Apparently, Millay didn't try to hide the fact that she was Nancy Boyd. Distressing Dialogues is under the the copyright of Edna St. Vincent Millay. She also wrote a very tongue in cheek introduction to the book as Edna St. Vincent Millay:

Distressing Dialogues is made up of twenty-two pieces that Millay wrote for Vanity Fair magazine. These works are in a variety of forms such as a spoof on agony aunt letters, dialogue with stage directions, free verse and short stories. Often, the subject of her writing deals with the complexities of how men and women relate to one another.

What surprised me about Distressing Dialogues was that each of these pieces had such joie de vivre and at the same time exhibited a biting wit that made me think of Dorothy Parker or Robert Benchley. I liked that she gave great detail about what characters were wearing, and the situations in her dialogues took place on ship voyages or at parties. Then there were vignettes which take place at home between a man and wife. The book is a fun read and like taking a trip to the 1920's. 

Unfortunately, Distressing Dialogues is no longer in print. I'd been on the lookout for the book and finally found it at a decent price on Ebay. But you might get lucky and happen upon Distressing Dialogues at a book sale. If you do, I highly recommend it. 

Do you have a favorite book published in 1924?

Edna St. Vincent Millay 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros: The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton

Happy Tuesday! Today I'm taking part in First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, hosted by Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea, where bloggers share a bit about what they're reading or planning to read soon.

This past week, I've been reading The Ghost Stories of Edith Wharton. This collection is made up of eleven wonderfully written short stories. I wanted to share a little of "Bewitched," one of my favorite the collection:

"The snow was still falling thickly when Orrin Bosworth, who farmed the land south of Lonetop, drove up in his cutter to Saul Rutledge's gate. He was surprised to see two other cutters ahead of him. From them descended two muffled figures. Bosworth, with increasing surprise, recognized Deacon Hibben, from North Ashmore, and Sylvester Brand, the widower, from the old Bearcliff farm on the way to Lonetop.

It was not often that anybody in Hemlock County entered Saul Rutledge's gate, least of all in the dead of winter, and summoned (as Bosworth, at any rate, had been) by Mrs. Rutledge, who passed, even in that unsocial region, for a woman of cold manners and solitary character. The situation was enough to excite the curiosity of a less imaginative man than Orrin Bosworth."

What do you think? Would you keep reading?