This Book

In the section self reads this evening, the husband (who someone on Goodreads refers to  as a “fat, white pig,” all self could think was:  “Oh. Mr.Rochester was FAT? I don’t remember that part.”) decides to call Antoinette ‘Bertha.’ Now, who’s crazy? How could anyone in their right minds change a woman’s name from ANTOINETTE to Bertha? There’s no preamble, either, to the announcement of the wife’s new name.

Bertha. B.E.R.T.H.A. BERTHA.

Positively cruel. It’s as if self were ordered to change her name to Caligula, for no other reason than that spouse has always liked the name (At least, this is the explanation the husband gives Antoinette)


  • How does the husband know that Antoinette put a spell on him so that he would sleep with her? He was suspicious even before he tasted the wine Antoinette gave him (According to him, it had a “bitter” taste) so perhaps he is psychic?
  • Why does the husband, immediately after sleeping with his wife, go next door to her servant’s room and sleep with the servant?
  • Why does the husband write for information on so-and-so Christophine? He is so stupid. Hasn’t he ever heard of the adage: Never look a gift horse in the mouth?

It reminds self of an article she read on Kristen Bell, star of The Good Place, in which her husband tells the interviewer that when he first met Kristen, he was mistrustful of her relentless enthusiasm.

Here, the husband is mistrustful of his wife because of a series of letters from a complete, effing stranger named Daniel Cosway, who claims to be Antoinette’s half-brother, and who says she had an affair with a very handsome man named Sandi.

What proper husband would put any credence on such a letter?

A proper stupid husband, that’s what!

The servant decides immediately after sleeping with the husband that she is leaving her employer. Wow, it must not have been very good. Mebbe the servant knew that if she stayed, she would be expected to keep sleeping with the husband? And maybe she thought: Why should I endure sleeping with the “fat, white pig”? My employment contract surely doesn’t cover that!

Anyhoo, Amelie is smart. Antoinette should have listened to Christophine and left, too.

Moving to next novel, The Summer Book, by Finnish writer Tove Jansson.

Stay tuned.

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