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I like the symmetry of the first two chapters: an engagement announced and another broken. Plus, there was Richard off to the army and the scene at the shooting range, and there was more action in those two chapters than in much of what has come before. That said, I, too, am unclear about the last chapter. Besides providing an interesting break to end on, it also seems to sow the seeds of dreads on many fronts while also further intertwining characters. But I need to consult my notes that I have supplemented my reading with.

I had earlier suggested that Bleak Blog would make a fine blog title, and I have to admit your blog post on the character list raises another possible one: Bleak Housekeeping.

Girl Detective

I caught up! Feeling v. please w/self. I think the last chapter is meant to show that Mrs. Snagsby is onto Mr's secrecy. Hilarious that she deduces incorrectly that Jo is his illegitimate son. But I think also setting the scene for when she does learn of some of the Lady Dedlock shenanigans, and that she might spill the beans.

I really like Mr. George, and thought it interesting that Esther seemed "into" him, given her previous yet for the good doctor.

Bucket does seem like that Dickens rarity, the non-polar good-bad character.

Hoping Richard dies at sea and Ada finds a nice man. Mr. George, perhaps?

Reading Les Miz alongside, and had just gotten to the battle of Waterloo when Bucket name dropped Waterloo heroes to George. Weird synchronicity.


Finally all caught up, just in time for the holiday break. As all these characters (2D or 3D) come and go I really find myself wishing for a character glossary. Thx V. for link to character map, but dang! missed opportunity Penguin Classics!

Plan to keep my eyes open for more of Mr. George. He's some sort of lynchpin btwn other characters, I'm sure of it. Mrs. Snagsby seems like someone ripe for exploitation, what with all she sees (or imagines she sees). I predict trouble from her. She's kind of the Dickensian Mrs. Kravitz.


Oh and fair warning. Lots of plot spoilers in the character map / cheat sheet. Girl Detective you may wish to avoid for now. ;)

Miss T

I'd really like to follow Mr. Bucket around a bit more. And thank goodness for our break -- maybe I'll get caught up!

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