for the most part this is an enjoyable novel about two lovers reborn who knows how many times, destined for tragic ends until they are able to sort out all of their issues. I should read more 'contemporary' novels written during that era featuring similar characters. i also enjoyed the remaining nine-tenths of the book set during the reigns of Edward VI, Lady Jane, Bloody Mary, and Elizabeth the Great. Seton clearly spent a lot of time researching the book, and it shows. and she does more than show off her extensive research - the novel is written by a person with such a strong feeling for the era that I eventually felt like I was living there as well. all of the characters felt real as well - even major figures like Edward, Mary, and Elizabeth who appear only briefly. my friend Richard criticizes the book for its gay character (reincarnated as well), but honestly I don't see a problem.
Rating: 3 stars out of five, but only because I still love the memory The Publisher Says: This unforgettable story of undying love combines mysticism, suspense, mystery, and romance into a web of good and evil that stretches from 16th-century England to the present day. She, our mother, and I all spent the summer of 1973, damn near 40 years ago now, reading this book. We did a sort of group read on the book, and oh my heck how we liked it! We all resonated with the travails of the characters, trying to work out their manifold interconnections and karmic debts. The gay characters are ugly...as within, so without, and Seton clearly has the attitude of her day towards gay men...the lusty lower-class wenches get their bastards and get turned out, the Catholic Church and its hypocrisy suffer agonies at the hands of the vile Protestant politicians...Seton was raised a Theosophist...good people turn hard and cold when given property to protect...the Exotic Hindu Doctor who understands Modern Medicine but Knows How to Be In Touch With the Spirits, oof!...oh, the lot! I get it, and in those days I absorbed it because it was the way my family thought, but how I wish I could go back to 1973 and smack this book out of my young hands! But the fact that the lady wrote this, her next-to-last book, when she was nearing seventy and had only just been divorced from her husband of nigh on forty years, and was beginning her long decline into ill health, makes Green Darkness a poignant re-read for me.
If you've been having difficulty getting to sleep, Green Darkness can help. I gave it two stars, one for the cover art and another for the spell the story casts until the reader gets to know the characters, feels the numbing effects of colorless narration more suited to bibliographical entries or dissertation abstracts, and starts wishing Seton had hired a starving journalism major to bang it out from a rough outline.
Would that not be slightly more important thank knowing that he's from Italy?) Worst of all, I felt like there was hardly much of a love story-- which is what the entire book is supposed to be based on (or that was my interpretation, at least.) It didn't seem to me that Celia and Stephen loved each other all that much (come on, she "forgot" about him SEVERAL times- you don't forget about the person you're truly in love with!) and Celia and Richard seemed to hate each other. If you want to read a real love story- go for Outlander by Diana Gabaldon instead.
Student carries a torch for the teacher for years, despite rarely seeing each other (except for a weird-almost-sexual-encounter during the middle of a home invasion??) and being married and widowed. Student sees teacher again, sexual advances ensue, teacher says "No" very clearly in several ways.
It is set in two time periods so is a modern and historical mixed into one. It's a great love story as well.
If I was reading it now for the first time, I would be inclined to rate it 3 stars.
Such a great title this book has, but I just can not read it.
Ann Seton was born in New York, New York, and died in Old Greenwich, Connecticut. The action of the novel moves back and forth between Northumberland, Tyneside, London and America. Anya Seton stated that the book developed out of her love for Northumberland.