Preparing to marry, Owen Gereth asks his widowed mother to move out of the family manse, leaving its glorious objects to him and his bride Mrs Gereth disapproves of her would be daughter in law and enlists a young friend named Fleda Vetch to save the collectibles and her son.
The Spoils of Poynton Preparing to marry Owen Gereth asks his widowed mother to move out of the family manse leaving its glorious objects to him and his bride Mrs Gereth disapproves of her would be daughter in law and en
My name is Fleda Vetch and I m the main character of The Spoils of Poynton That is to say, I appear to be the main character but the truth is, Mrs Gereth of Poynton Hall takes firm possession of that status early in the story Mrs Gereth likes taking possession of things and I like giving them up In fact, if my overly developed sense of humility didn t prevent it, I would claim my place as the most put upon character in literary history, for not only has my main character status been usurped, I v [...]
Virginia Woolf in a letter to Violet Dickinson, 25 August 1907 Well then, we went and had tea with Henry James today and Henry James fixed me with his staring blank eye it is like a childs marble and said My dear Virginia, they tell me they tell me they tell me that you as indeed being your fathers daughter nay your grandfather s grandchild the descendant I may say of a century of a century of quill pens and ink ink ink pots, yes, yes, yes, they tell me ahm mm that you, that you, that you write [...]
Leon Edel sees in The Spoils of Poynton James s first attempt to use his scenic method and his playwriting techniques Unluckily for us James was an indifferent playwright and such techniques along with a laughably puritanical conception of character are responsible for this suffocatingly miniature novel.There are no vistas beyond Poynton, the dowager cottage, and a few undifferentiated London streets and furnished rooms The action, such as it is, takes place on the tensed communicatory wires tha [...]
This book probably represents James at his most annoying Looking at it generously, there are 5 characters though I think one of them does not actually make an appearance Their world is cramped and claustrophobic Their concerns, for the most part, seem to be petty This is debatable, because everything with James at this point in his writing, seems to be pointing elsewhere to something ineffable The only problem is that things wouldn t seem so profound, mysterious, and ineffable, if only someone w [...]
Last night I dreamt I went to Poynton50 years earlier it was Thornfield Hall and 40 years later it was Manderley Those stately homes of England up in flames.In this fatiguing short novel 1897 , the compulsive and highly neurotic protagonist by name of Fleda Vetch James in a campy mood navigates between a mother who wants to preserve her spoils or treasures, collected over the years, for herself and a son who wants them for his soon to be bride In fact, his fianc e says the assorted knick knacks [...]
A quintessentially Henry James novel, this was a joy to read The widowed Mrs Gereth has spent her life furnishing her home, Poynton, with all manner of elegant furniture and art objects which are the focus of her attention and value In the young Fleda Vetch she has found an impressionable appreciator of her efforts and objects But her son Owen has determined to marry the rough and unappreciative Mona Brigstock who does not appreciate the furnishings of Poynton, which Owen will inherit on his mar [...]
Even though the story isn t all that great, James uses lots of words in ways that make the book difficult to read I m not exaggerating I ve seem concrete examples that show how his revisions of sentences deliberately push the verb farther back and add pronouns that don t have an immediately identifiable object If you can get beyond that, or enjoy it as some people seem to, maybe perversely, there s a finely knitted yarn in there Widowed Mrs Gareth must vacate her home, Poynton, filled with the t [...]
I m working on a theory that Fleda resists marriage to Owen because she doesn t want to end up another item in Mrs Gereth s collection Despite the fact that Fleda always comes when called, she certainly values her independence enough to make this plausible I don t know I have trouble with Henry James I m going to start reading one of his novels a year just to prove he s not the boss of me.
Die Kostbarkeiten von Poynton, eines der Sp twerke von Henry James, wurde im Manesse Verlag in neuer bersetzung von Nikolaus Stingl herausgegeben und hat dar ber hinaus eine wundersch ne Gestaltung mit farbigem Buchschnitt und Leineneinband erhalten, die allein schon zum Sammeln seiner Werke wunderbar ist Doch auch der Name Nikolaus Stingl tr gt eine Art G tesiegel unter den deutschen bersetzern, weshalb ich mich auf eine gute bersetzung und eine tolle Geschichte von Henry James freute.Ich bin e [...]
There are no spoilers for The Spoils of Poynton in these comments, but there are spoilers for The Ambassadors and The Portrait of A Lady I have great respect and admiration for Henry James, but this is not one of his best efforts A pretty good novel, but not one of his best efforts.The plot is set in motion by the following events a mother and father have spent their lives collecting beautiful objects, which are housed in their dwelling at Poynton They have a son who is a kind of jolly, well mea [...]
Henry James, The Spoils of Poynton Dell, 1897 The Spoils of Ponyton is the first novel James wrote in his later style, in other words, drawing room satire that isn t really about much of anything at all For some odd reason, later era James is what s universally praised in lit classes around the globe, while the early stuff, which is actually worth reading, is largely ignored.To be fair, James did get better at satire as time went on, but The Spoils of Ponyton has all the hallmarks of being a fir [...]
The Spoils of Poynton by Henry James is the story of a widowed woman name Mrs Gereth who must give up her property to her son because the property is to be transferred to the son and his wife upon his marriage Gereth is from Old Money, and she has meticulously collected all the fine pieces in her home, and so she does not want to part with them Matters are complicated from the beginning when a woman, who is not wealthy, named Fleda becomes Mrs Gereth s ally in her fight to preserve those antique [...]
Moral the universe is cruel, so nothing much depends upon one s taste in interior design.I read this because Nick Guest in The Line of Beauty is working on a film adaptation of it Which is appropriate because both Nick and Fleda heroine of Poynton have highly cultivated aesthetic sensibilities but can t have nice things.3.5 stars
This is an extraordinarily intense novella intense in its use of language and intense in its unremitting focus on just two or three characters First and foremost in the cast list is Fleda Vetch, a young woman whose superior quick wittedness and taste are balanced by her apparent plainness and moral rectitude next is the manipulative Mrs Adela Gereth, a widow to whom the unmarried Fleda becomes a companion Owen Gereth, Mrs Gereth s son, has lately inherited Poynton Place, thereby becoming a most [...]
Successfully captures the painful contrast of appearing socially approporiate on the outside, and in painful anguish internally Never before have I read a novel capturing a woman s torment as to whether or not to follow her heart, or what society deems necessary for her Mrs Gereth is one of the frosiest villains I ve come across in awhile The bulk of the novel centers on the narrator providing readers with the internal thoughts of Fleda Vetch, in sharp contrast with how she reacts externally Fle [...]
This is, perhaps, the single most focused book I ve ever read Henry James can get very involved THE TURN OF THE SCREW is an example of that He can be obtuse The Great, Good Place, anyone By the way, that story is beautiful But what was he trying to convey He can be arch THE BOSTONIANS But he understood the characters in THE SPOILS OF POYNTON There is no murder, no adultery and no planning for either, but this is a deadly story anyway, depicting the warfare between a widow, her son, her daughter [...]
The world of art may seem above ordinary passions but they actually live there in not so rarified form This brilliant short novel of James s is a study in obsession, and in fear to be oneself, contrasting several different women who stake out very different places in the world.Here s my review on Bilbiobuffet, a magazine every book lover should have an RSS feed to bibliobuffet book brunch c
I need to stop trying to read James later works with the hope of enjoying them.
I don t feel qualified to write the review that this book undoubtably deserves I still haven t understood or fully accepted the ending Was it not enough that Fleda lost the person she loved most in life, but to lose Poynton too I m heartbroken and I m just a reader of this fictitious story.I find I m left with a long list of questions that are sure to haunt me for at least the next week Does that mean Owen really didn t love Fleda Did she do what was right How sad and unhappy will life be for he [...]
I found the style of writing in the book difficult as the paragraphs are really long The story is one of self denial and the strength or lack of it when dealing with positivity or negativity in relationships I regularly wanted to sake 2 of the main characters This is a book I studied at university and sadly it has started to fall apart so it will have to be recycled.
You ve got to admire HJ s ability to write a tortuous sentence, even if he doesn t half go on a bit.
As my first dealing and reading of Henry James, this was a tough one for me Of course we all wanted the happy ending but I couldn t imagine that was going to happen Poor Fleda
Massive fan of Henry James, the later works do not scary me, but this story is simply insufferable Fleda is prudish to the point of stupidity.
Mentioned in Donna Leon s Uniform Justice Interesting plot.
Despite my considerable reading experience, this was my first attempt at tackling the American icon Henry James Woe is me Can I compare this novel to a game of Scrabble with liberated rules which allow back to front and down up spellings One continuously ponders the possibilities of untangling his prose to make the words fit sensibly in the labyrinthine maze of ponderous pronouncements There are phrases and references whose meanings are lost in the quaintness of colloquially loquacious warps in [...]
Mrs Gereth, une quinquag naire fort ais e, a consacr sa vie donner sa seigneuriale demeure de Poynton le lustre du go t le plus parfait Veuve, elle voit son fils unique se rapprocher de Mona Brigstock, une jeune femme issue d une famille o l on confond beaut et surcharge de bibelots la pens e que celle ci pourrait devenir la ma tresse de Poynton, le sang de Mrs Gereth ne fait qu un tour et elle d cide de trouver une autre femme son fils Les D pouilles de Poynton est un roman de longueur relative [...]
This is a rather marvellous comedy of manners, if I m using correct term Probably my second James after The Turn of the Screw and the Aspern Papers, as I m unsure if I already did get around to The Portrait of a Lady for it has been in my possession for ages This one does seem to me to be an excellent starting point The sentences are long and the writing is very descriptive both things for which he is known But there is a very dramatic strength in the story, which inevitably made me think how an [...]
No, Henry James isn t exactly light summer reading But after a dismal encounter with The Bostonians twenty years ago, I decided to give the Master another go part of my mid life project to read the classics I ve missed to date Good news James has been much rewarding this time around Last summer, commuting on the Long Island Rail Road four hours a day, I ploughed through The Portrait of a Lady, which I utterly adored Now comes The Spoils of Poynton from 1897 I ve been curious about it ever since [...]
This minor novel by James about a battle over a country house and the objets d art it contains does have some interesting moments for someone interested in how James changed and evolved as a writer through the 1890s While he had been playing with the idea of how some people mediate relationships between others for some time, this novel makes those musings explicit and gave James the space to work through some issues of psychology and narrative creation that would become increasingly important in [...]
Not the best by James, but still worth reading, if only for the famous, unique Jamesian style The main problem with this book is the main character whom I frankly could not stand Fleda Vetch is supposed to represent this sort of pure morality and innate goodness, but throughout the entire book, she came across to me as self righteous and downright selfish The contrast between the way James wished us to perceive the protagonist and how she appears to me has been commented upon at length by many c [...]