Friday, January 08, 2010

The American Senator

Anthony Trollope's book, The American Senator was my final selection for my 2009 reading list. It was probably my favorite novel read this year.

The title is a bit misleading. It refers to one of the characters, but not the main character. However, through the eyes of this visiting American senator Trollope is able to gently ridicule some British habits and customs of his day. I think the title was appropriate - the senator's wonder and astonishment provide a good bit of the comedy in the story.

The main story is of a woman, Arabella, looking for a suitable husband. She is ruthless in her quest, yet the reader is also made to feel sorry for her. At the same time, another young woman is trying to avoid marriage to a nice man, suitable for marriage, but not suitable for her.

Trollope deftly weaves the stories together, keeps the reader engaged and amused, and ties it all up neatly in the end.

I love Trollope.

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