Cover image for Reading novels
Title:
Reading novels
Author:
Hughes, George, 1944-
Personal Author:
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
Nashville : Vanderbilt University Press, 2002.
Physical Description:
xiii, 305 pages ; 24 cm
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780826513991

9780826514004
Format :
Book

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Library
Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Status
Central Library PN3365 .H78 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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Summary

Summary

Reading Novels is a unique piece of practical criticism, a comprehensive "poetics" of a genre that has not attracted a great deal of attention, at least not on this level. It is a reader's and student's guide that reaches beyond issues of individual texts and historical traditions to essential features of the form.


Reviews 1

Choice Review

Essentially a college classroom guide to reading English novels, Hughes' study does not focus on linguistics or critical theory and is thus easily accessible. Hughes (Tokyo Univ.) organized the chapters in five parts: "Openings," "Description, Character, Dialogue, and Monologue," "Narrative and Narrators," "The Language of the Text," and "Endings." He breaks chapters into easily understood short sections that read much like entries in a grammar book or a dictionary of literary terms. Most entries are adequate, but some (e.g., "stream of consciousness" and "meta-narrative") provide only cursory explanation. Hughes refers to about 150 works, with heavy emphasis on the 18th and 19th centuries--and such authors as Daniel Defoe, Henry Fielding, Laurence Sterne, Jane Austen, the Bronte sisters, and Charles Dickens--and less emphasis on the 20th century and authors such as Samuel Beckett, James Joyce, and Virginia Woolf. This is a book for those just beginning the study of the novel; those readers will benefit from the clarity of Hughes's style and his basic analytic approach. W. B. Warde Jr. University of North Texas


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