Thursday, March 24, 2011

Bleak House: Reading Begins on April 15

It's been a while. A lot has happened, in my life, and in the world, since we finally finished reading Don Quixote together a few months ago. And it seems like it was ages ago that we struggled through War and Peace.

Hosni Mubarak has been forced from office, and we've started bombing Libya, but the massive books that we've never read, those books that we feel like we really should get around to reading someday, remain, unchanged, judging us, looking down upon us for never having had the temerity or the Sitzfleisch to actually tackle them -- and complete them.

So it's time to take up another of those doorstops that we feel guilty about never having actually read. There seemed to be a weak consensus among the dwindling, rag-tag group left by the end of Don Quixote, for Bleak House as our next selection. If all goes well, we'll be done with the book in time for Dickens's 200th birthday on February 7, 2012.

Well, hopefully, we'll be done sometime well before that. The book is plainly very long. My hope is to finish the book before summer, when, hopefully, we'll be able to start in on another unreasonably long book. I'm thinking of setting a pace of roughly 100 pages a week, which should be doable, given that Dickens's prose moves along at a nice clip. At that pace, this project should take us about eight weeks.

Please spread the word. The more the merrier.