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Friday, September 17, 2010

RLS

Of the hundreds of people (at least) on whose words I have rested my eyes in my life, there is no one for whom I feel more warmth and affection than Robert Louis Stevenson. If I had ever been in love with someone across the space of time, it would be him. As I read his preface to "An Inland Voyage" on my Kindle (just the preface!), my heart swells again at his pure and exuberant soul, as open as the autumnal sky, and I nearly wept with joy and tenderness. I love him. I love, love, love him. If he were alive today I would cross the continent in a wagon to kiss the ground he treads. About his book, he wrote in the preface:

It is best, in such circumstances, to represent a delicate shade of manner between humility and superiority: as if the book had been written by some one else, and you had merely run over it and inserted what was good. But for my part I have not yet learned the trick to that perfection; I am not yet able to dissemble the warm of my sentiments towards a reader; and if I meet him on the threshold, it is to invite him in with a country cordiality.

8 comments:

CAVA said...

怀念起爱丁堡的Stevenson Memorial了。

如果没读过Stevenson的作品,从哪本开始比较好?

CAVA said...

Hmm, getting confused easily these days. Walter Scott Memorial was what I had in mind. Still, nice of them to devote a prominent city landmark to a writer.

Jun said...

嗯,这个问题还真不太好回答。RLS最有名的两部小说,Treasure Island和化身博士,都不是我最喜欢的。我觉得可以先看看 Kidnapped,有很多高地风景。背景是很复杂的历史事件,我到现在也没太搞清,但不需要搞清也很好看。另外一本历史小说 The Black Arrow (罗锅理查三世/红白玫瑰战争的时代),我是很喜欢的,《射雕英雄传》抄袭它的情节。Kidnapped 里面有一些苏格兰土话,我得靠书后的对照词表,但是看看就习惯了。

Jun said...

爱丁堡有个作家纪念馆,纪念三个作家: Walter Scott, Robert Louis Stevenson, 及诗人Robert Burns.

CAVA said...

嗯,我们图书馆有Kidnapped,在儿童书籍部门。先排上书单。

Jun said...

Kidnapped 常常跟 Treasure Island 一样被归为“写给男孩子的故事”里面,因为它讲的也是一个男孩子的冒险故事,特别是开头的部分。如果把故事里的某些历史背景忽略不计,完全可以当作一个简单的冒险故事。

眼下正在看的 An Inland Voyage,旅行游记,也挺好的。我还有本儿短篇故事集 South Sea Tales,是他搬到萨摩亚住以后写的,我也喜欢。

Barbara said...

唔,An Inland Voyage,我也一直向往看这个。Jun看过毛尖写那个《从爱丁堡到萨摩亚》没?写得中肯否?

Jun said...

An Inland Voyage 跟 Bill Bryson 的游记特别是那本讲他和朋友走 Appalachian Trail 的很有点儿相似的感觉,有些段落也挺逗的。

毛尖那篇没看过。

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