They arrived yesterday! I started House on the Borderland last night, and as it is very short, I should work my way through pretty quickly. I skipped Carl's review because I wanted to read the novel before getting any more details.
One interest I have in this novel is that it was an influence on Lovecraft (who had a huge influence on many authors). I've never read anything by Lovecraft, but his name surfaces all the time. He was a character in The Chinatown Death Cloud Peril which I reviewed here -- Blackstone the Magician is another name that I frequently come across in other reading; in fact, Eudora Welty mentions having seen him perform when she was a child.
Speaking of Welty, I'm almost through with the biography. I did try skimming some of the "datebook" type paragraphs, but wasn't very successful. I've come to admire Welty as a person and, although the biography has many dull spots, the research is impeccable and thorough.
Golden Boy has taken a back seat as I've waded through Welty's life and digressed to fiction, but as soon as I finish Welty, I'll return to it.
Yesterday, on Bayou Quilts, I wrote about Self-University and think a self-directed study of the Gothic novel might be fun since I'm involved with the R.I.P. challenge and have several appropriate books at my fingertips. Also, reading blog entries on the challenge provide another kind of research, don't you think?
Since I taught Dracula, at one time I did some reading in this area. In fact, the background reading and critical analyses on the novel were almost more interesting than the novel itself, adding so much about the historical aspects and the Stoker's contemporary Victorian culture. I despised the most recent film version which took WAY to many liberties, altering the original concept.
Those who are reading Dracula, I'd love to read your reviews since I don't need to worry about pre-reading influence.