Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Trend I love: reimagined classics

One of the first ARCs I dove into after ALA Annual was Francesca Segal's The Innocents, a translation of Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence to the contemporary London Jewish milieu, More Anita Brookner than What Happened to Anna K.?, it was a lovely way to revisit some familiar characters and conflicts and feel that some behaviors are indeed universal across time and place. To be really successful, the writer and reader both have to be intimate with the source text.

It got me thinking about some other recent reads, like An Unexpected Guest by Anne Korkeakivi, which was a loving update of Mrs. Dalloway, complete with the heart-string tugging shell-shocked soldier, a symbol of generational waste.

And now I have order New Girl, a YA update of Rebecca. While I loved Brian James' The Heights and the homage to The Bell Jar in And Then Things Fall Apart by Ariana Tibensky, some reimagings detract. This week, Crys Hodgens reviews Falling for Hamlet, which I couldn't get into, but, frankly, is anything as ripe for an alternate point-of-view as Salinger?

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