Our Spontaneous Heroine

I have girls boarding school stories on the brain tonight.

Just watched the trailer for Cracks which looks amazing. See how beautiful and ominous it is? All muted tones, and bright eyes and careful bodies, and some dangerous undercurrent no one will quite acknowledge.

And I’m currently reading The Getting of Wisdom thanks to the fabulously cheap Popular Penguins. I picked it up from a bargain bin when ostensibly shopping for a secret santa because the two sentences on the back pushed SO many of my buttons:

“…the coming-of-age story of a spontaneous heroine who finds herself ensconced in the rigidity of a turn-of-the-century boarding school.  The clever and highly imaginative Laura has difficulty fitting in with her wealthy classmates and begins to compromise her ideals in her search for popularity and acceptance.”

That’s some fine blurb writing right there. I would bold all the words that grabbed me, but it’s pretty much every single one longer than four letters, apart from ‘ensconsed’. So far it’s enjoyable enough, but only one paragraph has really grabbed me (doesn’t  hurt that it uses my name), after a teacher tells off a student for having “a real woman’s brain: vague, slippery, inexact, interested only in the personal aspect of a thing”:

And then, all of a sudden, just as if an invisible hand had opened a door to an inner chamber, a light broke on her. Vague, slippery, inexact, interested only in the personal – every word struck home… It was but too true: until now, she, Laura, had been satisfied to know things in a slipslop, razzle-dazzle way, to know them anyhow, as it best suited herself.  She had never set to work to master a subject, to make it her own in every detail. Bits of it, picturesque scraps, striking features… were all that had attracted her. Oh, and she, too, had no intelligent curiosity.  SHe could not say that she had ever teased her brains with considering why the earth went round the sun and not the sun round the earth. Honestly speaking, it made no difference to her that the globe was indented like an orange, and not the perfect round you began by believing it to be… it was clear that her vaulted cleverness had never existed, except in Mother’s imagination.”

Not crazy on the sexism, BUT, I have no discipline for learning. Good thing its nearly NY Rez time…

how DO you do your eyes like that?


December 13, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , , . Uncategorized.


  1. D.A.R.Y.L replied:

    The antithesis of this ‘Cracks’ film. British borstals. Raw and unapologetic, revels in ugliness. I sneezed five times consecutively.

  2. swingsandskateboards replied:

    Oh wow, you know how to embed in comments, high tech.

    Yeah that looks kinda fun too…

  3. D.A.R.Y.L replied:

    It’s a decent little film. Also, I see that Ridley Scott’s daughter directed ‘Cracks’, her feature film debut. This makes it all somewhat more interesting to me.

  4. swingsandskateboards replied:

    Yeah, and he executive produced. Not that I’m a film buff or anything – knew the name but had to imdb it to work out why. Now it all makes sense, you rabit G.I. Jane fan. 😉

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