Really enjoying “Her Husband,” the book about Ted Hughes and Sylvia Plath I started reading last week. Since I started reading it I have checked out the most recent version of “the Unabridged Journals Of Sylvia Plath” and today my library hold for “Birthday Letters” came in. Also, this morning I happened to find “The Colossus” at the Friends Of The Library book sale so I went ahead and picked it up. So further down the rabbit hole I go.
The book feels a bit anachronistic so if I hadn’t read a biography of Plath previously I would find it frustrating. But instead I’m really loving it. I’m enjoying the way Middlebrook is bringing the couple’s poetry into the story. I am going to like reading the poetry she references. Really looking forward to diving into Plath’s Journals.
Reading this book kind of feels like watching a train wreck. Their relationship is awful but it’s hard to look away for reasons I can’t pinpoint. At this point in my research I can’t see that he was abusive, but I think this is the general glossing over of Hughes’s behavior that I’ve been hearing about. My honest opinion of the pair at the moment is that I find them both a little irritating and completely egotistical. It’s kind of like reading a good novel where you really can’t stand the characters, but you you can’t stop reading it because there are other compelling reasons to keep going, like the writing is really good.