Read Electricity by Victoria Glendinning Online


'Electricity' is the story of a spirited, sensual young woman's adventures in 1880s, recounted with wit, candour and an intimacy of closely observed domestic and technical detail....

Title : Electricity
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781416522492
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 312 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Electricity Reviews

  • Barb
    2018-10-14 13:46

    Once again I have to say I think the review from Publisher's Weekly gives away too much of the story and at the same time I whole heartedly agree with their criticism that as a reader it is difficult to feel emotionally connected with Charlotte the narrator. A lot of interesting issues are woven into the story of Charlotte Mortimer's life. Set in Victorian, London, Charlotte marries Peter Fisher a brilliant young man passionate about electricity. The two of them travel to Morrow Hall, the home of Lord Godwin, who has hired Peter to convert the home to electrical lighting. Charlotte finds herself drawn to the handsome and charismatic Lord Godwin. The events that unfold and the family history that is only ever really alluded to are all very interesting but I never felt a real connection with Charlotte. I understood her limited choices in life and sympathized with her plight but I wish that Glendinning had allowed Charlotte to explain to us why she made the choices she did. Maybe it was that she had grown up with secrets around her and thought that's how adults operate? And while I'm not one to enjoy being left hanging, I did like the untidy ending and I think that it's part of what would make this a good book club choice. The ending is completely open for discussion. There are also plenty of issues to discuss, fidelity always seems like an interesting topic. And what about the quiet of the country before the high voltage lines were installed? What about responsibility? What about mad men running asylums? There's a whole bunch of juicy stuff thrown in here that would be great for a group discussion. But for me I didn't love the main character and so in my opinion this book was good not great.

  • Catherine Gordon
    2018-09-23 10:03

    This is a completely unique book which has a lot of layers - an historical period drama, the role of women in this point of history and their vulnerability,the implementation of electricity into normality, the spirtual world, parent/child relationships, the class system as well as descriptions of the natural world. The difference between city life and country life. Health, social standing, love, loss etc. The narrator is essentially unlikeable although everything is viewed from her perspective. She is a very detached observer of her own life, and seems emotionally remote however the reasons behind why this might be the case are referred to which may help to explain her relationships with others. Not the most likeable of people but that doesn't detract from the story and provides an interesting perspective to the narrator. I think the story will be one that sticks with you, and there are some scenes that really stay with you. A page turner but not a typical novel which can only be in its favour.

  • JoAnne
    2018-09-30 12:54

    Historical fiction about a young woman who marries a man obsessed with electricity.. It is a brand new field and he is on the cutting edge. There is much in this book that will stick with me. The descriptions of the homes, the clothing, the smells, the class differences. Well done.

  • Amy
    2018-09-21 08:52

    I read this a while ago, on loan from a friend, and then found a copy at Goodwill. Interesting book. It has stuck with me over the past year or two, and I find that at odd, stray moments, something from it pops back to mind.

  • Larry
    2018-09-23 14:42

    As a big fan of the biographical writing of Ms Glendinning I was somewhat surprised to find she had written a novel. However I entered the book with some trepidation considering all she has so successfully written in the non-fiction arena I was unsure what to expect. Immediately I was taken with her style and prose but never fully warmed to the protagonist Charlotte. I feared for her and her questionable decision making but never felt close to her as I wished. The exciting area which I wished the author had taken us was with the beginning of women's right group and advocates. She was a single minded feminist albeit a little naive but she never fully faced her freedom until the end of the book when so much unnecessary damage ad been done. I recognise we are reading mid to late Victorian period in our 21st century eyes and I appreciate the authors attempt to be true Charlotte's time and ethos of women being second class citizens but her teacher's influence seemed to have been so strong at the beginning and at the end but where was it in the middle of the story when such strength was needed? A well worth reading well written book, I hope she writes more.

  • Jackie Delaney
    2018-09-29 07:53

    I read this novel some years ago and loved it. The change from candlelight to the harshness of electricity is enthralling and evocative. This change to glaring electricity from the soft light of candles wrough many changes on society, and the protaganistic experiences most of them. Beautifully evocative of life when candles ruled.

  • Alison Young
    2018-10-05 09:59

    Very interesting and unusual story.

  • Betty Silvia
    2018-09-27 10:54

    This short book engaged my interest and really transported me to the people and beginning times of electrical lights in London, England. I enjoyed following the main character's life choices and family events that shaped her into a mature woman. Very interesting to experience the pros and cons of the age of electricity.

  • Barbara Sibbald
    2018-10-09 11:42

    Victoria Glendinning is known as a biographer (Rebecca West, Leonard Woolf, Vita Sackville-West, Edith Sitwell, Elizabeth Bowen etc.), indeed Vita is a very fine book. Here she turns to fiction set in the late Victorian era when electricity was just coming to be. Charlotte marries Ralph who is involved in that venture, with his sight firmly on the future, while she struggles with her past and tries to see a future. She even gets involved in spiritualism. I wanted to like this and though I found it interesting (particularly the wealth of detail on the homes and living conditions), I was not emotionally engaged in Charlotte's life. I was a cool observer. Like a biographer? I don't know.

  • Lynne
    2018-10-06 10:42

    I thought this book was very unique in its writing style, and it had some very interesting historical aspects to it, including some cool descriptions of how electricity was first introduced to homes, but I did not care for the main character and her poor life decisions. The way she narrated was often without feeling, sometimes cold take on situations. There were some very dark parts to this book, including child abuse which was at one part graphically written. I don't know how this book got on my to-read list, and I don't know why I finished it, other than the need to see it come out with a happy ending. Which it more or less did not.

  • Melanie Williams
    2018-09-25 14:50

    It was great to read a book with scenes set in my hometown of Hitchin. I thought this book was well-wrtitten and brought the period to life. It was a shame that I didn't like the characters very much, but maybe I oughtn't to be too judgmental given the constraints of the time.... (obviously I am not referring here to the incidents of child abuse mentioned, which is abhorrent and inexcusable in any context!)

  • Elaine Cougler
    2018-10-17 09:47

    Electricity by Victoria Glendinning takes the period of electricity developing from one rich home to another--not in whole cities yet--and builds a story around that concept. Metaphorically Electricity also abounds with sparks flying between Charlotte Mortimer and her young husband, the electricity king. Interesting to learn more about the times.

  • Velvetink
    2018-09-28 11:54

    Then ending was a bit weak and predictable and disappointing compared to the rest, rushed maybe...but still enjoyable and interesting about the period in England when Electricity first was installed. although 11.10.2013 1 of 22 books for $10 (fill a bag)

  • Jim Perry
    2018-10-11 13:47

    Anything electrical is briefly incidental to this turn-of-the-century young woman's experiences (and poor life choices).