Friday, 28 January 2011

Zoe (Jewsbury)

My fourth read for Virago Reading Week is Zoe by Geraldine Jewsbury. We do not meet the title character until page 67; cleverly constructed, the book begins with the tale of Everhard, a young man who is destined for the priesthood although he has considerable doubts about his vocation and whether or not he has sufficient faith to pursue it. On page 67, we meet Zoe, a lady of illegitimate birth, who has overcome her illegitimacy to marry, although she is not terribly happy in her marriage. It is immediately obvious that the two's paths will become intertwined, but quite how and when remains to be seen. I was really engaged by this book, and longed for Everhard to be able to escape the confines of his religious doubt.

It's just been published once by Virago with an original green cover, and it's Jewsbury's only work featuring on the VMC list. Once I eventually read my way through the VMC list, she is another author who I might seek out again.

Thanks again to Carolyn and Rachel for prompting me to get my VMC reading head in gear this week. It can get a bit lonely ploughing through the VMCs at times so it has been great to have company over the last week and a few more visitors to my blog as a result. Do carry on popping in and saying hello - as we said at the start of the week "it's Virago Reading Week" every week here.


  1. What a beautiful cover! And a very interesting sounding Virago, that I hadn't heard of before. Thanks for highlighting it, Verity, and thank you for taking part so enthusiastically this week -
    your knowledge has been a wonderful asset and I love how you have taken the opportunity to showcase some lesser known VMCs. And of course, Virago Reading Week continues right here!

  2. Ooohh, I've never seen this one before. Sounds like one of the vmc's that makes you start reading them in the first place. Can't wait for your next review!,

  3. That is wonderful that they reprinted it with the original cover as it's a beautiful one.

  4. It's been so great to read about obscure authors I wouldn't have heard of if it weren't for your blog and Virago Reading Week. Thanks for your wonderful reviews!

  5. I love your reading project and wish I could do the same, but I get so easily distracted by other books and am such a slow reader it would take me eons. Still, I happily buy these older VMCs whenever I come across them. I like that you read the titles that are lesser known--you're blog is such a great resource now as often I see only titles and no descriptions! And I love the cover of this one as well!