Published Aug 2012
The exciting sequel to the enormously successful Is Heathcliff A Murderer?, John Sutherland’s latest collection of literary puzzles turns up unexpected and brain-teasing aspects of the range of canonical British and American fiction represented in the World’s Classics list. With bold imaginative speculation he investigates thirty-four literary conundrums, ranging from Daniel Defoe to Virginia Woolf.
Covering issues well beyond the strict confines of Victorian fiction, Sutherland explores the questions readers often ask but critics rarely discuss: Why does Robinson Crusoe find only one footprint? How does Magwitch swim to shore with a great iron on his leg? Where does Fanny Hill keep her contraceptives? Whose side is Hawkeye on? And how does Clarissa Dalloway get home so quickly?
As in its universally well received predecessor, the questions and answers in Can Jane Eyre Be Happy? are ingenious and convincing, and return the reader with new respect to the great novels they celebrate.