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November 17, 2019

3

#AUSReadingMonth 2019 An Unconventional Wife

by N@ncy

 

Hook: introduction 

  1. Ms Hoban explains what drew
  2. …her to write about Julia Sorell Arnold
  3. It was very personal  text that
  4. …made this reader eager to continue reading!
  5. I had to find out if Tom Arnold could
  6. …tame the high spirited Julia Sorell
  7. ..the the ruling belle of Hobart of Tasmania
  8. ..into the Victorian ideal of a wife?

 

Conflict:  Tom vs Julia …and religion

  1. In the world that Julia and Tom inhabited
  2. religion was never simply about belief.
  3. It was about position. economic stability and place in society.
  4. This was true for Tom and Julia…and their children.

 

Tom’s weak point:

  1. He had a tyrannical understanding of marriage.
  2. He turned the blowtorch onto Julia.
  3. He blamed her for all that had happened to them.

 

Julia’s  strong point:

  1. For a woman….marriage was a destiny,
  2. …nothing more, nothing less.
  3. But Julia would be…
  4. a revolutionary wife.
  5. not go where Tom took her
  6. not believe what he believed
  7. not do as he asked.

 

Conclusion:

  1. This is a magnificent biography!
  2. Mary Hoban just swept me away to Tasmania and
  3. …then on to Brussels, England and Ireland.
  4. I was so engrossed in the story I had no time to take notes!
  5. Julia felt like a very modern woman…in a Victorian world:
  6. She was fiercely independent.
  7. Tom radiates toxic masculinity in every chapter.
  8. As in many marriages…partners hope to change each other’s behavior.
  9. We read in this book the collision course
  10. that Tom and Julia were destined to follow.
  11. Tom’s wife must in all things submit to him.
  12. Julia cannot give up her own soul.
  13. Their relationship becomes a battle to the death.
  14. Julia refused to adhere to the ideal of a Victorian woman.
  15. She refused to be silent.
  16. #Excellent biography!

 

Last Thoughts:  (feedback to @bronasbooks)

  1. I rarely get ‘swept’ away with a biography but
  2. my heart just went out to Julia Sorell Arnold!
  3. Mary Hoban writes with a flair that touches on a novel….
  4. it is a well-crafted, beautifully rendered meditation on
  5. abandonment (Julia – mother)
  6. marriage (opposites attract)
  7. religion (Catholic and Protestant….sharing the same bed!)
  8. grief, (loss beloved father; children [stillborn, sickness])
  9. the ‘can’t live with you…but can’t live without you’
  10. ….type relationship between Julia and Arnold.
  11. It seem distance does make the heart grow fonder
  12. …and not to mention 9 children!
  13. I could go on and on
  14. ….but I hope this book is on your TBR
  15. great read during Xmas holidays!

 

 

3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Nov 17 2019

    This sounds magnificent stuff! Can’t wait to check it out myself now. Thanks for such a sterling, stirring review.

    Like

    Reply
    • Nov 17 2019

      I rarely get ‘swept’ away with a biography but
      my heart just went out to Julia Sorell Arnold!
      Mary Hoban writes with a flair that touches on a novel….
      it is a well-crafted, beautifully rendered meditation on abandonment (Julia – mother)
      marriage, grief, (loss of children)
      the ‘can’t live with you…but can’t live without you’ type relationship between Julia and Arnold.
      It seem distance does make the heart grow fonder…and not to mention 9 children!
      I could go on and on….but I hope this book is on your TBR …great read during Xmas holidays!

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

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  1. History Memoir and Biography Round Up: November 2019 | Australian Women Writers Challenge Blog

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