Thursday, March 05, 2009


From Singles 2009

Still she watched me. Still her eyes seemed very dark. Then, "I would need no key," she said, "while I had spirit help. And, I would come to you, Aurora. And we would go away together."

Margaret Prior. Sad and lonely since her recent suicide attempt after her love married another is determined to do good deeds by visiting the local women's penitentiary. London. 19th century. Margaret is intrigued by and drawn to one woman there, Selina Dawes, a spiritualist medium who is imprisoned after a client suffered an "attack by spirit".

Grey. Spooky. The sort of stuff I love.

But, I am sooooooooooo naive. (How, at 47??)

Here I was laughing to myself about how a novel set in a women's prison must have lesbian undertones and digging the spirit stories that Selina tells Margaret. While I was not completely surprised by the final chapter, I was pretty disappointed both for myself and for - well, that would be telling. What amused me more about myself and the world, however, was what I found I went to Amazon to find the photo for this blog entry: Sarah Waters - big lesbian writer. And, the reviews! My favorite complained not only that this was decidedly not the steamy number of Water's first novel but that the love interest (Selina) was described as very unsexy - pale and drably dressed with red, swollen, chapped hands. The chick is in PRISON! No one looks her best surrounded by limestone. (Still, I must admit the book cover - which is nothing like the cover of the CD - is more than a little suggestive.)

It was fun. Yes, maybe it did drag a bit, but I was listening to it on CD as I went to and from work - except for those times I'd bring the disk inside to binge on while I chopped vegetables or did other quiet things in the kitchen. A much better experience than my last BOT (book on tape).

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