Thursday, April 7, 2016

Top ten depictions of British rain

Melissa Harrison is an author, freelance writer and occasional photographer who lives in South London. Her second novel, At Hawthorn Time was shortlisted for the Costa Novel of the Year award and longlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction. Her new non-fiction book is Rain: Four Walks in English Weather. At the Guardian, Harrison tagged her ten top depictions of British rain, including:
Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

The night Heathcliff disappears from the Heights, having overheard Cathy say that to marry him would “degrade” her, a violent thunderstorm adds to the novel’s already high foul-weather count. Cathy stays up all night, “bonnetless and shawlless”, calling for him in the rain. The next day she comes down with a fever that nearly kills her. The association between Heathcliff and bad weather persists – when his body is discovered, the window open, “his face and throat were washed with rain; the bed-clothes dripped, and he was perfectly still”.
Read about the other entries on the list.

Wuthering Heights appears on Meredith Borders's list of ten of the scariest gothic romances, Ed Sikov's list of eight top books that got slammed by critics, Amelia Schonbek's top five list of approachable must-read classics, Molly Schoemann-McCann's top five list of the lamest girlfriends in fiction, Becky Ferreira's list of seven of the worst wingmen in literature, Na'ima B. Robert's top ten list of Romeo and Juliet stories, Jimmy So's list of fifteen notable film adaptations of literary classics, John Mullan's lists of ten of the best thunderstorms in literature, ten of the worst nightmares in literature and ten of the best foundlings in literature, Valerie Martin's list of novels about doomed marriages, Susan Cheever's list of the five best books about obsession, and Melissa Katsoulis' top 25 list of book to film adaptations. It is one of John Inverdale's six best books and Sheila Hancock's six best books.

The Page 99 Test: Wuthering Heights.

--Marshal Zeringue