I've always loved historical/period tv series, especially the ones from BBC, and like many women out there, my favorite one has been the P&P adaptation with Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth. I thought nothing would top that, but after watching the adaptation of Elizabeth Gaskell's North & South last Sunday I have to say it comes pretty, pretty close (and R. Armitage has certainly gained another member for his fan club). I've read the novel a long time ago, and couldn't remember many of the details, but had to re-read the final part immediately after I finished watching the series. And although the adaptation is quite different from the original, those last scenes at the station were so romantic that I can't say which version I like the most.
Anyway, after I chatted with my friend X. for a while about it (and to whom I have to thank for this great recommendation) we started to talk about what other BBC series of the kind were worth watching, so now I'm compiling a future shopping list and would appreciate any input anyone might want to give. I've watched most of Austen's adaptations, and have Sarah Water's Fingersmith to watch this weekend (I've watched Tipping the velvet already, btw).
So far, I have (in no particular order):
- Wives and daughters (1999) - an adaptation of another Gaskell novel (this one I haven't read, though)
- Jane Eyre (2006)
- Our mutual friend (1998)
- Bleak house (2005)
- Middlemarch (1994)
- Sparkhouse - a modern version of Wuthering Heights ? or so it seems
- The mayor of Casterbridge (2003) - just because I'm a fan of Ciarán Hinds
- The impressionists
- Charles II (2003)
These all seem to have great reviews. Also I only found out today that there's an adaptation of "The other Boleyn girl", my favorite P. Gregory book, but I don't seem to be able to find the DVD available anywhere.
Anyway, any more good recommendations out there that I should know of ?
On books read, it seems that 2007 started better than 2006 so far. I borrowed K. Hosseini's "The kite runner" from F. during vacation, and have to admit that I cried my eyes off. So, so sad, but a wonderful read nonetheless. Amy Tan's latest was a bit disappointing, it didn't quite strike the same chord with me as all the previous ones, but McKillip's fantasy in "The forgotten beasts of Eld" was very enjoyable (thanks for that, T.)
Elizabeth Berg was an author on my TBR for a while now, so I finally read one of her books, and it made me want to read some more. And a note on Murakami's "Kafka on the shore": I love his books, the writing is always so brilliant, but the storyline can sometimes be too confusing and far fetched. I can't say I understood half of what was meant here, but then again, it's Murakami so maybe that's the whole point. A final note on one of the books I'm reading now, J. Safran Foer's "Everything is illuminated" - maybe I just need some encouragement, but has anyone enjoyed this book ? I can't seem to get past the first chapters, but I don't want to give up, especially since I liked "Extremely loud and incredibly close" so much.
That said, the books on my "currently reading" list seem to have been there forever, and I'm having trouble finishing those, but I hope I'll be able to tackle them soon. To keep me going, I've started another Madeleine Wickham (actually, it's a double issue containing both "The tennis party" and "Swimming pool sunday", the ones I hadn't read yet), which is a sort of chic lit, but not the rosy kind, and as always, a very easy going read. What about you ? What are you reading today ?
(By the way, thanks to everyone who has e-mailed me or commented here with book recommendations before, I really appreciate it)