story: “The Three Strangers”, “A Tradition of Eighteen Hundred and Four”, “The Melancholy Hussar of the German Legion”, & “The Withered Arm”
author: Thomas Hardy
where: Taiwan, roadtrip to Kenting
note: I am terribly behind on my record keeping. I read these stories from Wessix Tales in mid-October! While the mighty Henry James was rather dismissive of Hardy, I rather enjoyed this lot, especially the descriptions of rural customs in the semi-fictional universe of Wessix. It is fun how you can even see glints of Ishiguro in some of Hardy’s pastoral descriptions.
a line: “‘They’ve just been saying down in the barton that your father brings his young wife home from Anglebury tomorrow,’ the woman observed. ‘I shall want to send you for a few things to market, and you’ll be pretty sure to meet ’em.'” -“The Withered Arm”
theme(s): Incubus, jealousy, dreams, abandonment