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Recommendations for newer British Literature?

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My dd16 is enrolled in a British Literature class. They are about 3 weeks in currently. The teacher emailed me and said that my daughter is very disinterested in the book they are reading, Pride and Prejudice. They are watching parts of the movie too.


My daughter is really struggling to understand the language and finds it terribly boring. I can't say that I am much better. Literature was not my strong suit. Science and math are. That's why I farmed this class out so I wouldn't have to relive my Literature days. I strongly dislike Shakespeare even to this day because of it.


My dd does not read for fun. She reads for necessity. A skill that is definitely not from me. I am a voracious reader. She is a reader when need be. She can definitely research a topic that she is interested in to death though. Mostly nonfiction stuff about animals....her true love.


The teacher wants to know if we should even continue with the class if she is going to be disinterested. The other books that they will be reading will be A Beka's British Literature (selections), Best of Sherlock Holmes and The Curates Awakening. Having never had read any of these books, I can't say if she will be disinterested in these either.


If I take her out of the class I will have to come up with my own selections of books. Are there newer, more interesting British Literature books available? What are your thoughts on the other two books that will need to be read in class? Similar to P&P?


Thanks for any advice given!


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Wow. Sit her down and watch all 6 hours of the 1995 Pride & Prejudice with Colin Firth together . . . it should hook her quite well. And you too.


The first 3 episodes are a bit slow (like the book) as the characters are being established. But then you both will have a terribly difficult time turning off the TV until you watch the remaining 3 episodes back to back.


The Keira Knightley movie version will NOT have the same effect. :glare:


Likely you can borrow the movie from the library, or borrow it from a Colin Firth fan. Which would be most of the female population. :001_smile:


If you had posted this on the WTM General Board, with "Colin Firth" in the subject line, it would get 500 views in 5 minutes.


(A slight spoiler) Elizabeth Bennett is NOT a "girly girl", not a mindless socialite looking for a husband. She is a great role model who has taught both my dd and I many "life lessons" in an easy, enjoyable way.


So . . . enjoy the movie, and then she will have some motivation to enjoy the greater subtleties in the novel.

Edited by Beth S
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I agree about watching the movie, although I did like the Keira Knightly version.


I am NOT a huge fan of Jane Austen. I read the book and struggled to get through it. I'm not a girly girl and it all seemed so, well, not appealing to me. I watched the movie after reading the book and it was better.


I will most likely have ds read it. We'll do it together. My philosophy (still developing it) is that my ds will not love everything he reads. Some pieces are important to literature and understanding history, cultural references, etc. P&P falls into that category for me. Also even if she thinks it's boring, she can still have an opinion on the book or its literary qualities.


The book did get more appealing in the later half, so it can be worth sticking with. Personally I would not let her drop the class simply because she finds the book boring.

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The problem is that those are the basic books expected in a brit lit class. You can do Jane Eyre or Wuthering Heights instead--which I personally like better-- but one of these books is done. Shakespeare is standard -- movies, a side by side edition, seeing it live is best. For Sherlock Holmes, maybe update to Dorothy Sayors or Agatha Christie. But Sherlock is just as good. I have never read the curate book. It sounds good--edited George MacDonald. Probably an easier read than the original.


If you switch to doing it at home someone needs to read too. These are books that are fun to talk about. Are the discussions in her class done well? I would probably be tempted to leave her in for exposure if they are. Try to add to the experience at home with movies etc.

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