Stancliffe’s Hotel by Charlotte Bronte
These witty, racy vignettes set in Charlotte Brontë's imaginary kingdom of Angria feature rakish dandies, high-society courtesans and the dashing hero Zamorna.
It’s very heartwarming and wholesome to think of the Brontë siblings sitting down to write these in the nineteenth century. I imagine a rainy day, a wooden table covered in papers, and lots of whispering. So charming.
Sadly, I wasn’t as taken with these vignettes as I had believed I would be. Set in a fictional place, the focus seemed to be on the political goings on of the country. It felt plotless, with no real direction other than the narrator wandering around aimlessly and giving us his commentary. I was completely lost.
The fault will, no doubt, lie in part with Penguin, who have again chosen to snip passages from a larger work, with no context, grounding, or explanation.