Archive for March, 2009


Dora Deane

March 29, 2009

Although I’ve read Tracy Park about four times and love it to a degree that is truly silly, I never read anything else by Mary Jane Holmes. Part of it was just laziness, but I think it was also because I was worried that her other books wouldn’t be as enjoyable, and that I’d be disappointed. Now that I’ve read Dora Deane, however, I no longer have to worry. That’s not to say that Dora Deane is anywhere near as awesome as Tracy Park. It’s not. And it’s different in a lot of ways, many of which I think are due to its having been written thirty years earlier. But Mrs. Holmes still pushes all the right buttons. I think she appeals to my worst instincts as a reader, and I kind of love it. Dora Deane owes a lot to The Wide, Wide World, what with its pretty orphan who is sent to live with her aunt after her apparently perfect mother dies, but where Ellen Montgomery’s story was all about cultivating a certain kind of moral and religious strength, Dora Deane is pure melodrama. Read the rest of this entry ?