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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gothic Excess
I so enjoyed reading this work which just typified Gothic excess at its very best. What we have here is the story of Julia and Emelia and their brother Ferdinand, children of the autocratic Marquis Mazzini who is every bit as diabolic a villain as Radcliffe's more famous Count Montoni. The children are motherless and live in a castle (in the same sublime species of...
Published 18 months ago by V. G. Harwood

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3.0 out of 5 stars A sicilian romance
This book was really heavy going and i was not able to complete it
i tired getting into it twice but to no avail
sorry it was just not my cup of tea
Published 21 months ago by Lisa Ward


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gothic Excess, 29 Sept. 2013
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I so enjoyed reading this work which just typified Gothic excess at its very best. What we have here is the story of Julia and Emelia and their brother Ferdinand, children of the autocratic Marquis Mazzini who is every bit as diabolic a villain as Radcliffe's more famous Count Montoni. The children are motherless and live in a castle (in the same sublime species of landscape as Udolpho) which has an entire ruined southern hall which is reputed to be haunted. Of course, this is Radcliffe, so we know there aren't any real ghosts and there's going to be a rational explanation (even if it is more unlikely than if there had been actual ghosts). The story mainly concerns Julia, who falls in love with the courtly Hippolitus. However, the evil Marquis has other ideas and tells Julia that she must marry the evil Duke of Luovo. There then follows a series of adventures whereby Julia escapes, ends up in a convent, is given the choice between marrying the Duke or taking the veil, escapes again, gets captured by banditti, caught up in a shipwreck, escapes again, gets caught up in another shipwreck and all kinds of adventures before the inevitable happy ending. In the meantime, the ghostly groans in the castle are explained and everyone (except those who had it coming i.e. the Marquis and his evil adulterous wife) get what they deserved. This is a brilliant example of Gothic fiction with fainting heroines, sword fights, shipwrecks (x 2) and lots of sublime rocky rugged scenery. I loved it so much although I've got to say I was exhausted by the end of it all. Poor old Julia really does go through the wringer to get where she needs to be. It's not too long - certainly not as long as the more famous Mysteries of Udolpho and is a brilliant introduction to the excesses of the gothic genre.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Sicilian Romance (Oxford World's Classics), 16 Jun. 2014
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This review is from: A Sicilian Romance (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
I have read Anne Radfcliffe before, and I am absolutely crazy about Gothic Literature, which i believe is the forerunner to Detective Fiction. A Sicilian Romance like most Gothic Literature centres upon bizarre events, and strange happenings - making the text a bit of a shock fest - designed to titillate the reader. If you haven't read any Gothic Literature, then this is a good starting point.
Anne Radfcliffe is a very great writer - making the text very enjoyable.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Her Second Novel, 5 Aug. 2010
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M. Dowden (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: A Sicilian Romance (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
This was Ann Radcliffe's second novel and like her first it was published anonymously. Although gothic to some extent, her first novel was more historical fiction, but here we see Mrs Radcliffe starting to write what she became famous for. Once again, this tale didn't cause a big splash as it were when first published, but it did carry on being quite popular even many years later.

Set near the end of the sixteenth century, our story revolves around a family who inhabit a castle in Northern Sicily. With bigamy, adultery, false imprisonment, an attempted forced marriage and secrets and other shenanigans, as well as a few coincidences, this isn't the best gothic tale ever written, but it is fun. At only 200 pages long this is a relatively quick read that should keep you absorbed for a few hours.
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4.0 out of 5 stars linguistically rich gothic fare, 5 April 2015
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John Hopper (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This is a short gothic romance novel by this late 18th century author, more famous for the much longer Mysteries of Udolpho. It is very much of the same type, with evocative and dreamlike descriptions of the landscape; beautiful fainting women, handsome heroes and dastardly villains; gloomy decaying castles harbouring ghostly secrets that turn out to have a rational solution; staggering coincidences and the plot strands resolved satisfactorily at the end (slightly abruptly here, I thought). I love the language in which 18th and early 19th century novels were written.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A sicilian romance, 17 July 2013
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This book was really heavy going and i was not able to complete it
i tired getting into it twice but to no avail
sorry it was just not my cup of tea
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4.0 out of 5 stars gothic novel, 19 Mar. 2013
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Really enjoyed this classic gothic novel Damsels in distress, dark brooding lords, underground tunnels & castles ruins all you would expect of novel of this genre
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3.0 out of 5 stars Melodrama and romance, 9 Mar. 2013
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This is a quick read - if you like gothic, melodramatic, romantic literature, you will like this. Although the characters could be a bit more dimensional, overall it is not a bad read and the ending was satisfying.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Highly Predictable, 17 July 2009
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This review is from: A Sicilian Romance (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Having read Mysteries of Udolpho, I decided to give this one a go. Although it is not as good as Udolpho and is very predictable, it is an entertaining, quick read and I thoroughly enjoyed it!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Well Priced, Good Read, Would Recommend, 16 Nov. 2014
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This review is from: A Sicilian Romance (Oxford World's Classics) (Paperback)
Bought for study with the sublime, loved the beautiful descriptions of the natural landscapes and setting the characters trans-versed. Story line and characters were predictable and simple but this is to be expected with the Gothic genre.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A gothic gem, 11 Nov. 2014
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Like all Radcliffe novels, a thundering good read, keeping you turning the pages till the end: wild landscapes, extreme vice and even more extreme virtue make it a must for lovers of the gothic!
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A Sicilian Romance (Oxford World's Classics)
A Sicilian Romance (Oxford World's Classics) by Ann Radcliffe (Paperback - 9 Oct. 2008)
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