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I've not only read this but attempted to teach it a number of times to disaffected undergraduates, few of whom ever got the point. I think it is a wonderful book, terribly funny in places and also very touching -- Uncle Toby, my goodness. Very glad you enjoyed it.

Sarah Cuthbertson

Thanks for your report which has encouraged me to try Tristram Shandy again, this time doing it your way. I'm sure it's a box of delights if I can only unlock it. The quotes you give are serendipitous for me - I'm doing that feat of literary daftness known as NaNoWrimo just now (writing a 50,000 word novel in a month, how stupid is that?) and he describes exactly how I started and will probably continue...or not.


Good for you - I got bored and irritated, though I loved bits a lot. But I didn't skip - and I didn't know you were capable of such a sin? You MUST now read A Sentimental Journey, which is quite excellent and about a tenth of the length.


But did I skip, Lindsay? I merely offered the possibility of skipping!


Good luck with both, Sarah!


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I don't think Sterne would mind if you skipped bits, or indeed read it backwards or standing on your head. It is that kind of book. Did you know that Sterne was a victim of body-snatchers and in the manner of his own literature someone reputedly brought a public medical disection to a end by shouting that's Laurence Sterne as they viewed the body on the slab! he was duly reburied.


I read this for a post grad course - really enjoyed it (apart from the bit with the nuns if I remember correctly - seemed to go on for the length of a bible!). I just loved Uncle Toby, and the mystery as to where he was injured!

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