Wise Children is predominantly set in London, all quotes used above are from the book.
Namesake. Time to introduce you to my favourite paperback. Wise Children. Angela Carter. A tale of fortune and chance, the story of two families deeply entwined but bitterly opposed, and an allegory so comedic, tragic and witty that the great Bard himself could have written it. It’s no surprise that Carter admired Shakespeare’s work, Wise Children is based on the theatre – the two sides of the theatre, the crème de la crème and the underbelly. We learn about the history of the theatre and all the secrets and scandals that populate it from the narrator, Dora Chance. Great name. Set in London, mostly. The story is told on Dora’s 75th birthday and flashes back and forth through time as she tells us her tale; the novel is full of adventure, mystery and has so many twists and turns that reading it feels like you’re whizzing through her life on a Nimbus 2000. Dora is such a likeable narrator too, it feels like you’re with her the whole story, sat by her side as she tells you her about her life. Carter addresses the reader throughout with little colloquialisms and quips that really makes you become a part of the book, which is one of the things that I love about it. I also love that the story of Dora and Nora Chance (Nora is Dora’s twin) is not typical, it doesn’t run smoothly, there’s good parts and bad, romance and perversion, birth and death, luxury and squalor – it’s a story of parallels and how their lives are affected by them. I can’t really explain why you should read this book, but if it sounds like you might like it from my rambled summary, you will love it.
What’s your favourite book?