Monday, April 30, 2012

Clarissa - April Post

Blurg. I am so behind on posts! After the readathon, I think I was just blogged out. I have 14 books and a couple of short stories to post about!!! Yikes. So...expect some sort of post of mini-reviews soon because some of the books weren't worth a full a review and I don't want to dig myself too deep a whole. I may just skip a couple of them too. I also haven't commented on anyone's blogs all week, although I have been reading them and marked a few to go back and comment on later because I just wasn't in the mood at the time. But on to the topic at hand - Clarissa.

As April began, I was still totally frustrated with Clarissa. It was still repetitive. Then I read Delaisse's post where she mentions loving it, and I went back and read her original post about it and she raves about it and this may be what sparked a sudden interest in this from the blogosphere. She promised that something would happen soon. And it finally did - although I'm pretty sure we're still not to the BIG something happening yet.

At this point, Clarissa finally does something other than whine and write letters. She runs off with Lovelace! She does this as someone seeking assistance and rescue, not as a lover. For now. At that point, my reading sped up and I actually finished the April reading a week early! I was shocked! I was also SHOCKED that Richardson actually skips including some of Lovelace's letters because they would repeat what was in some of Clarissa's??? Seriously dude? You do that but you felt compelled to write 297 other letters of Clarissa repeating herself? What's up with that?

And oh, Clarissa, you somehow make running off with a man boring. I do appreciate what Richardson is trying to show. Women had very limited options. Clarissa is faced with two options: be imprisoned by her family and forced to marry an older man she does not love or run off with a possible rake and ruin her reputation whether or not she actually sleeps with him. Not much of a choice. What's frustrating to me is that this should be a compelling story! That sounds like a good plot, right? Something to keep you interested in finding out what happens to her? Instead it feels like Richardson is working hard to make the reader miserable. 

Wait! One more good thing I almost forgot about. We start learning more about Lovelace in April and he's definitely not that great. He knocked up a poor girl and abandoned her, and implies this isn't the only time. It appears Clarissa might get off easier since he does seem to want to marry her (probably for her money), but he's so not prince charming, and Clarissa is realizing that. Hopefully that will make May a bit more interesting.

Overall though, I just do not care for Richardson's writing style. Or, more accurately, his lack of a good editor. I have a feeling I'm going to want to reach for some Hemingway when I'm done with this mess. You can check out the other posts linked on JoAnn's page this month.


  1. Richardson could definitely have used an editor... like cut out half those March letters! I may be a few letters away from Clarissa running off, but I am very suspicious of Lovelace. I'm impressed you were ahead of schedule, and agree it's gotten really good this month. If I have enough time, I might even catch up next month!

  2. Clarissa makes everything boring! I don't like Richardson's style either - very tedious. It's been Lovelace's letters that kept me going this month and I'm not sure his offers of marriage are sincere.
    Good luck with May!