Posted by Karen R on December 29, 1997 at 14:02:09:
In response to Hooray for NA!, written by Carolyn B on December 29, 1997 at 12:38:10
I have twice attempted to read Mrs. Radcliffe's Udolpho which Catherine devours so eagerly. (Someone here at Pemberley has suggested I try starting with one of Mrs. R's shorter novels instead.) I read enough of Udolpho at least to recognize all the excessive (greatly detailed ) emotions the heroine feels, which JA spares us in Catherine's case.
I am so glad you said that about Udolpho. Having done quite a bit of copy editing in my day, I found that all I wanted to do was get my blue pencils out!!! But it wasn't just the detailed emotions of the heroine, it was the overly detailed everything. I felt like, if I wanted to learn about botany, I would have taken out a book on plants!
However, I can see how the general populace liked those books. They had nothing better to do!! No television, Internet, movies or other sources of entertainment. So what if they were inordinately and unjustifiably long.
BTW, I noticed at the library that an "abridged" version of Udolpho exists. I, being a purist, opted for the 2 volume edition, plus a copy of the "The Italian???" the other Radcliffe book that Isabella mentions to Catherine. I think I will go back to get the "abridged" version. Shame on me!!
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