Nightwood – Djuna Barnes

51voa5ATITL._AC_US436_QL65_Definitely not a book for the faint hearted, Djuna Barnes is not an easy read. She was a journalist, modernist writer and artist, and published Nightwood in 1936 – it is regarded as a lesbian fiction cult classic and an important modernist text.

This book is one long lament about failed love affairs, love lost and obsession. The black humour is subtle but very well done. Be prepared for the the Doctor’s lengthy agony aunt talks with the other characters where he tries to impart words of wisdom to help them but invariably they are not listening; probably just as well as the advice tends to be a bit obtuse.

I reckon this is the type of book you read because you are studying English Literature or because you feel compelled to. It’s not an easy or relaxing read but it is another one of those books which have one scene that sticks in your mind for ever and keeps replaying when you expect it least.

A little warning that my posts may be few and far between over the next few months as University has started back for me and I’m in my final year of an MA in English Literature – so lots of work to do but I love it!


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