How To Be A Heroine – Or, what I’ve learned from reading too much) by Samantha Ellis. Recommended by Fiona (Reader Development Team and Whitefield Library).
On a pilgrimage to ‘Wuthering Heights’ with her best friend, Samantha Ellis found herself arguing about which heroine she liked best: Jane Eyre or Cathy Earnshaw. She was all for wild, free, passionate Cathy, but her friend found Cathy silly, a snob who betrays Heathcliff for Edgar and makes them all unhappy – while Jane makes her own way. And that’s when she realised that all her life she’d been trying to be Cathy when she should have been trying to be Jane. So she decided to look again – and harder – at all the heroines she’d loved through her life, from her earliest obsessions with the Little Mermaid and Anne of Green Gables; and then on to Scarlett O’Hara, Sylvia Plath, the Dolls (of the Valley); and later Riders, Buffy, Flora Poste from ‘Cold Comfort Farm’ and many, many more.
“This was a refreshing trip down the memory lane of my own childhood and adolescence; Samantha Ellis read many of the same books I did – Anne of Green gables, Little Women, Pride and Prejudice, and Jilly Cooper – and it was fascinating to hear someone else’s grown up take on the books they used to love. Not all of the characters come of well, and I didn’t agree with everything she had to say, but I cherished the chance to revisit these stories and immediately shared the book with another bookworm friend. If you like reading about reading, this is a great one to choose, but be warned it will add to your TBR pile!” Fiona.