Advanced search

Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell

(37 Posts)
MyIronLung Thu 27-Aug-15 12:29:07

I'm about 130 pages in and I'm struggling! Theres been a couple of bits that I've enjoyed but on the whole, so far, I'm finding it very dry!

Is it worth persevering? I'm normally loathe to give up on books (especially ones that I hankered after for ages and was certain I'd love!) but it's so big and the thought of just struggling through the next 900 pages or so is making me want to set fire to the flipping thing!

OP’s posts: |
Buttercup27 Thu 27-Aug-15 12:32:16

You need to finish it and let me know if it's worth starting! I watched the TV series and really enjoyed it and assumed like most things the book would be better im guessing I'm wrong

atticusclaw2 Thu 27-Aug-15 12:33:49

DH read the book to my tummy when I was pregnant with DS1. Its wordy but is worth persevering with. It's well written and a good story.

atticusclaw2 Thu 27-Aug-15 12:34:43

DH is convinced that the difference between bookworm DS1 and book hating DS2 is the fact that DS1 had Jonathan Strange read to him whilst in my tummy and DS2 had the Da Vinci Code!! grin

Badders123 Thu 27-Aug-15 12:43:24

I couldn't get through it.
Ditto Mr whicher

Costacoffeeplease Thu 27-Aug-15 12:51:04

No, it's not worth persevering - step away now!! I spent bloody hours on it earlier this year, as so many here recommended it, and I thought it might get better, but it doesn't. Go and watch some paint dry for a bit instead

Ditto for Poisonwood Bible

MyIronLung Thu 27-Aug-15 12:52:42

Hmm, mixed responses. I think I'm going to give it another 100 pages or so and then think about it again. Hopefully by then I'll be engrossed grin.

buttercup I've got the BBC adaptation recorded but if I don't finish the book I won't be able to watch it. The guilt will eat away at me for quitting, and I really want to watch it!

I honestly found War and Peace easier than this...

OP’s posts: |
MyIronLung Thu 27-Aug-15 12:54:04

costa grin
What makes it worse is I have a ton of other books I want to read on my shelves and kindle!

OP’s posts: |
kelda Thu 27-Aug-15 12:55:43

I have recently finished it, I loved it. I really get her dry humour.

I plan on reading the Ladies of Grace Adieu next.

kelda Thu 27-Aug-15 12:56:35

I saw the TV adaptation first, I want to watch it again. There was so much I missed that is explained in the book.

OneBiscuitAtATime Thu 27-Aug-15 12:56:55

I've read it too, and I really enjoyed it once it got going. No idea how many pages in though.

BobbinThreadbare Thu 27-Aug-15 13:04:55

JS and Mr N is worth finishing. There's supposed to be another; I bought it when it first came out so I've been waiting ages for the sequel..!

Mr Whicher, on the other hand, is atrocious, which is unusual for me to say as I will read anything and always try to finish a book.

There's another peculiar, bad, 1800s set novel called the Glass Books of he Dream Eaters. I had to give that to the charity bin. Sheesh!

Costacoffeeplease Thu 27-Aug-15 13:21:18

I have a house and kindle full of books too, and I really resent the time I wasted on both of these - give it up without regret, just be glad you didn't waste any more time grin

CoteDAzur Thu 27-Aug-15 15:35:10

I loved it. Waited a few years to forget it sufficiently, then re-read it recently. Savoured every chapter smile

Make sure you read all the footnotes. That is where much of the story and all of the background is to be found.

queenrollo Thu 27-Aug-15 15:40:41

I'm struggling through this on my now 4th attempt. Every now and then I feel i'm enjoying it and then hit a bit of a wall where it just seems nothing is happening in spite of all the words i'm reading.

I'm sticking with it though.

JoffreyBaratheon Thu 27-Aug-15 15:45:36

Half way through the TV I got it on Audible (as that month's credit because it is very expensive otherwise) and both my 22 year old son and I loved every second of it as an audiobook. In fact I listened so much I got ahead of the TV series.

I since bought it on Kindle so next time I have a Jonathan Strange urge, I'll probably actually read it. But a huge recommend on Audible.

DuchessofMalfi Thu 27-Aug-15 16:46:35

Another one who enjoyed it. I read it earlier this year in readiness for the tv adaptation and loved it. I raced through it, found it a complete page-turner. But then I like quirky books that have a bit of magic and oddness about them smile And this one fitted the bill. I enjoyed the short story collection The Ladies of Grace Adieu as well.

However, it could be a real chore if you're not enjoying it. I'd recommend giving up, because it's going to just drag on and on with more of the same for 1000 pages and you'll start to resent it and the time taken to read it.

It's definitely a marmite kind of book that doesn't appeal to everyone. I have a rule that if a book isn't gripping me by page 100 then I ditch it and move on, without guilt grin

queenrollo Thu 27-Aug-15 16:54:59

Duchess - I have the same rule about ditching books (after persevering with The Name Of The Rose and hating every minute).
There is enough about this book keeping me going though, so i'm going to stick with it.

Badders123 Thu 27-Aug-15 17:32:08

Ah you see I loved the name of the rose smile
(I just ignored all the Latin)
I have loads of books to read in my kindle and have just got the Silk Road by Peter frankopan.

MyIronLung Thu 27-Aug-15 17:44:36

I've cheered myself up by buying Touch by Claire North (first fifteen lives of Harry August) grin. It's going to be my reward for persevering with J S & M N!

OP’s posts: |
SoupDragon Thu 27-Aug-15 17:46:55

I started it and gave up. It needed someone to go through it and chop out a vast number of unnecessary words. I found the writing style impenetrable.

SoupDragon Thu 27-Aug-15 17:50:16

I like quirky books that have a bit of magic and oddness about them

Oh, me too. The story is just my sort of thing. Unfortunately, the writing style ruined it. I enjoyed the BBC adaptation - it was what the book should have been.

DuchessofMalfi Thu 27-Aug-15 18:17:29

And talking of quirky books, I can't wait for The Hanging Tree by Ben Aaronovitch - the latest in the Rivers of London series out in November smile

kelda Thu 27-Aug-15 18:18:46

If you don't get her writing style, just give up. Her books are to be enjoyed as I did, they are not supposed to be a penance.

southeastdweller Thu 27-Aug-15 18:50:50

Dry is the word. I gave up after 200 pages and don't regret it. Probably won't ever pick up another fantasy book again.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in