We’ve made it to the halfway point! I know it’s been a struggle for some, but I hope the story has hooked you by now. Everybody can check in at Trish’s official post here.
Here are a few of my thoughts so far, there will be spoiler for the first half of the book, but nothing after the 34th chapter.
There are a ton of tedious details, but the plot has definitely made it worth while for me. I can’t believe how much Becky Sharp reminds me of Scarlett from Gone with the Wind. Mabel noted on twitter that Gone with the Wind was written before the author read Vanity Fair. If that’s true the similarities are truly amazing!
Becky Sharp and Amelia Sedley have a very Scarlett / Melanie relationship, though I think I like GWTW's Melanie more than Amelia, she's a stronger person. Both women were certainly shaped by what they expected from the world. Becky had no one, so she became sneaky and manipulative. Her ambition made her cold to others. Amelia on the other hand grew up being loved and was promised to a man from childhood. She expected to be loved and cared for and when her father went bankrupt much of that went out the window.
I'm excited to find out the eventual fate for both characters.
Here are a few scenes that really stand out in my memory:
- That opening scene, where Amelia and Becky are leaving Miss Pinkerton's Academy for Young Ladies and Becky chucks the book out the window. I laughed so hard. In one quick motion she made it clear that she needs no one’s pity. What a spunky character! We get such a good idea of who she is with that brief introduction.
- The aftermath of Joseph Sedley’s drunken declaration of love for Becky. It showed us Joseph’s cowardice and how easily he was to manipulate. It also showed us that Captain George Osborne was an absolute snob at heart. It actually reminded me a tiny bit of Mr. Darcy’s actions with Bingley.
- When Becky turns down baronet Sir Pitt Crawley’s proposal and we find out she’s secretly married to his son, Rawdon Crawley! What!!! Becky was working as a governess for him and all of a sudden there’s this amazing opportunity for wealth and status, everything she wants… but she’s already married!
- George Osborne standing up for Amelia in front of his father and sisters. For a second we think he might be a good guy, then he marries her and quickly looses interest. He married her more out of a momentary rebellion than out of love. Then he and Becky begin their flirtation and he truly hurts Amelia.
- We learn that George Osborne died during the Battle of Waterloo and Amelia and Becky are both stuck in Brussels as the panic begins to spread.
- When Amelia confronted Becky for trying to steal her husband and ruin their marriage. Becky tried to act all sweet and innocent, but she’s not fooling anyone!
- Poor William Dobbin, he’s such a sweet character! He does whatever he thinks might make Amelia happy though she doesn’t realize it. I think that man deserves some happiness.
So onward into the second half of the book. I’m hoping Dobbin gets some love and Becky gets her just desserts. Keep reading everybody and come back here on March 15th to share your final thoughts on the book!