Friday, March 09, 2007
Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell
This debut work of Susanna Clarke took her ten years to accomplish, and won many prizes after published including 2005 Hugo Award.
The story was about two English magicians (real ones) who at first were master and pupil then became rivals and enimies. Mr. Norrell, the first "practical magichian" in the story, was an uncouth and eccentric Yorkshire old gentleman with thousands of books (books about magic and "books of magic"). He was dedicated to apply his magic on the war between England and Napoleon France. The second magician, Jonathan Strange, was a young gentleman who admired the work(black magic) of John Uskglass (The Raven King), the greatest English magician during the fifteenth century.
I spent two months on this giganic novel (not everyday but almost). It was a joyful ride, but the most exciting part was the last 200 pages. Though this novel is not so marvelous as Neil Gaiman's American Gods, it still created a magical and dark 19th century England.