Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Cheesy as it sounds I feel like I've been on a journey with the characters, partly because I've been reading it for so long and partly because the plot covered such a long period of time, so many different events and lots of characters. Having said that though, I wasn't bored with the characters. They were very well drawn and I ended up liking even fussy Mr Norrell. Worringly, I think I saw something of myself in the little man who lived in his library, jealously guarding his books! Regardless, I was totally drawn into the world the author had created.
I was rooting for a happy ending, and it was, but not in the way I expected. I don't like predictable endings, so I was happy with the end but still surprised at the way it turned out. I can't believe it was Clarke's first novel - as an aspiring writer I find that quite scary!
I'm ready for something different now but I'm not sure what to read next. Possibly Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier, or Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, which I bought ages ago but have never gotten round to reading. I love finishing a book, and knowing that I only have to decide where I want to go next - Dickensian Britain, Imperial Japan, Middle Earth or 19th century Russia. My shelves are full to bursting (to the consternation of Fiance) and there are so many books that I want to read, I just have to pick one...