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Books

Analysis Of Historical Fiction: The Midnight Rose By L. Riley, The Nightingale By K. Hannah, Brooklyn By J. Crowley, And A Room With A View By E.M Forster

June 23, 2022 by Essay Writer

As humans, we often dwell on the past in an attempt to understand how it was and what happened. The genre of historical fiction allows us to see through someone’s eyes what life could have been like. The texts The Midnight Rose by Lucinda Riley, The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah, Brooklyn directed by John Crowley and A Room With A View by E.M Forster are all examples of historical fiction. The genre demonstrates ideas such as coming of age, tragedy and struggle, love, and society and class through these texts. Depicting societies of different times to allow us to understand that life comes with its own hardships and struggle. The texts A Room with a View by E.M Forster and Brooklyn directed by John Crowley demonstrate coming of age through the genre Historical Fiction. A Room with a View and Brooklyn are both about girls who travel overseas and in that time grow and change. In A Room with a View, Lucy Honeychurch plays the piano with incredible passion and skill, which contrasts with the naive and innocent image she portrays. “If Miss Honeychurch ever takes to live as she plays, it will be very exciting both for us and for her.” Mr Beebe. Forster demonstrating the idea that people should not ignore the desires or passions their hearts want to lead as she is capable of more. In Brooklyn, we see Eilis Lacey help a young girl on the journey to Brooklyn. “When you get to immigration, keep your eyes wide open. Look as if you know where you’re going. You have to think like an American.” Showing a full circle in character as she returns home a grown confident, capable woman. Crowley illustrating the idea that it is not easy navigating challenges but facing them shows true strength. The text The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah also demonstrates coming of age as Isabelle grows from a fiesty young girl to a brave young woman that helps in the war efforts. Isabelle through hardship becomes a hero when her sheltered life changed in an instance. Hannah showing the idea that adapting to change may be difficult but can be rewarding. The text Brooklyn, more effective use of the coming of age in Historical Fiction as we see that the time between adolescence and adulthood is not easy as you are forced out into society and unsure how to cope. Eilis Lacey coping through a solid figure in her life that helps her feel somewhat at home. A Room with a View and Brooklyn, two texts that demonstrate the genre of historical fiction through characters coming of age and embracing the change in themselves for the better.

The Nightingale and The Midnight Rose are two texts of the Historical Fiction genre that deal with tragedy and struggle. The Nightingale and The Midnight Rose both about women during the same time coping with decisions on their own. Vianne in The Nightingale talks about her daughter Sophie when she says, “What good is safety if she has to grow up in a world where people disappear without a trace because they pray to a different God?” Hannah shows us that fear should not overcome us but that we should do face up to it and push it out. In The Midnight Rose, Anahita recalls the words of her father, “My father always said that to push a rock an inch in a lifetime was the same as throwing a hundred pebbles into the sea every day. Big change comes slowly, but it will come.” Riley showing us that sometimes our duty does not coincide with what we want. But also that we can only control our own destiny up to a point as Anahita copes with constant backlash and being knocked down. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah a better use of tragedy and struggle in Historical fiction as war is a present idea that we associate with the past through the fighting but not on the moral dilemmas people faced. Vianne struggling with her normally cooperative nature in pursuit of helping the innocent. The Nightingale and The Midnight Rose, two texts that demonstrate the genre of historical fiction through tragedy and struggle as characters deal with their ability to come to a resolution against actions. Love is a prominent feature through historical fiction this is shown in the texts The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah and Brooklyn directed by John Crowley. In the Nightingale and Brooklyn, both women feel lost and unwanted but find and see love is around them. Isabelle Rossignol felt lost not receiving or feeling love but on her death bed, she realises this was not the case. “All her life she had waited – longed for – people to love her, but now she saw what really mattered. She had known love, been blessed by it.” Hannah illustrates how war changes the nature of love. She saw love through the people she had helped and those that she met but also through her family, despite them not being able to express it. In Brooklyn, Eilis has a realisation where she needed to be. “One day you’ll catch yourself thinking about something or someone who has no connection with the past, someone who is only yours, and you’ll realise that this is where your life is.” Crowley demonstrates that home is not necessarily where you are most comfortable but where you are most happy. But also that you should not ignore what you want in pursuit of what others want. The idea of love is also shown in the text A Room with a View by E.M Forster, as Lucy, like Eilis pursues what others want out of her and in return ignores what she wants herself. Brooklyn directed by John Crowley uses the idea of love best through historical fiction. This is because he delves into not just love for another person but for life in a place, a home.

The Nightingale and Brooklyn, two texts that demonstrate the genre of historical fiction through the idea of love as they find that love is a comfort that challenges those in the worst of times. In the texts, A Room with a View by E.M Forster and The Midnight Rose by Lucinda Riley society’s standards and class system restricts and represses difference among people. In the two texts, couples that do not fit the class system are forced apart out by older generations. In A Room with a View, Lucy pretends to be the image of society. “I think that you are repeating what you have heard older people say. You are pretending to be touchy, but you are not really. Stop being so tiresome and tell me instead what part of the church you want to see.” Mr Emmerson. By telling Lucy this, it shows Lucy and the readers that should embrace her individuality and say what she wants. Emmerson demonstrating the idea that to succumb to the rules of class and expectations only lead to dissatisfaction in one’s self. In the Midnight Rose, Anahita faces prejudice in England based on her nationality. “So much depends on our expectations of what our life should be. The less you expect, the more content you are.” Anahita. Riley shows despite being knocked back so far, Anahita is strong and has a strong acceptance of change and disappointment. Riley demonstrating that society represses change and difference through fear of it in the world. In A Room with a View and The Midnight Rose, the genre of historical fiction is explained through society and class in that it does not allow individuals to represent their true identity or allow them to discover it. The genre of Historical fiction brings strong links to the ideas of coming of age, tragedy and struggle, love, society and class through the texts The Midnight Rose, The Nightingale, Brooklyn and A Room with a View. Allowing us to see the importance of staying true to yourself and doing what makes you happy, the ability you hold to make a change and help against wrongs, that love is a comfort that challenges us daily, and that society was a barrier in the past but it does not need to be one now. Historical fiction is not just a genre linking modern stories about the past, it is a gateway to see that life is not perfect and it never has been. The history of the world tells us to not make the same mistakes twice. To listen. To listen to these characters that are coping with tragedy, making decisions and searching for what they want in the world. Oprah Winfrey once said, “the biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams.” Your life may not take you down the course you want but have trust and allow yourself to do something different, it may surprise you.

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