Wednesday, August 5, 2009

The Woman in White

I'd been wanting to read this for a while, after coming across Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical version of the book. Not that I ever got to see the musical, I just watched some clips and fell in love with the song "I Believe My Heart." (You can see the musical version of it here and the one by Keedie and Duncan James here. I'd love to have Josh Groban and Hayley Westenra sing it together . . .)

The Woman and White and author Wilkie Collins never seem to be in the forefront of the classics, and I really wondered why as the first parts of this book completely enraptured me. There's something tender and innocent about it, which is captured quite nicely in "I Believe My Heart." But then the emotional pull started to get tiring. The middle of the book was draining to read. Then what follows, while interesting, is driven by figuring out the facts of a mystery. Mystery isn't exactly my genre. I get a little bored if it lasts too long. And The Woman in White is a long mystery at 620 pages.

Here's my brief comment on those 620 pages: this book definitely has its moments and I'd recommend it as a good read, but the plot-driven state seems to leave it a little bare in other areas, so I can't make it a great favorite.

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