Sanditon Character Review: Clara Brereton

The schedule for the Character Review posts will be changing to Friday (or Saturday at the latest from now on).

*Warning: This post contains spoilers about the characters from the book and the television show Sanditon. Read at your own risk if you have not watched the show. There is something to be said about a well-written, human character. They leap off the page and speak to us as if they were right in front of us, as flesh and blood human beings, instead of fictional creations.

In a world in which class status, patriarchy, and money rule, an unmarried woman who lacks a steady income has a limited number of options. The first is to marry well and hope that her husband treats her right. The second is to rely on family for financial support. The third is to find employment that will allow her to enter genteel poverty. In Sanditon, Clara Brereton (Lily Sacofsky) is in this state.

One of three potential heirs to her wealthy aunt, Lady Denham (Anne Reid), Clara is in a state of survival. Forced to become two-faced, she is one way with her aunt and another way with her cousins. Sir Edward Denham (Jack Fox) and his step-sister, Esther (Charlotte Spencer) are also vying to inherit their aunt’s fortune upon her death. Knowing that her intellect may be the only thing that saves her, Clara knows how to play the game.

Each tries to one-up the other when it comes to their aunt. Like Clara, Edward and Esther play sweet to Lady Denham’s face, but snipe at her when they are alone. Though she tries to reason with Esther that the money can be split three ways, Esther will not hear of it. A survivor of sexual abuse, Clara decides to change tactics and fight for the whole kit and caboodle.

The game reaches its apex when Lady Denham is sick. Clara and Edward tear her library apart, looking for her will. They end up sleeping together. When this comes to light, both are disinherited and Esther is named as their aunt’s heir.

Cut to a while later. Clara lands on Lady Denham’s door, pregnant with Edward’s child. While Esther has wised up to her brother’s schemes, Clara has not. After their son is born, she believes what Edward tells her. After she finally sees the light, he is once more kicked out and she walks away, giving Esther her son to raise.

To sum it up: Clara is doing what she must do. In her world, she is disenfranchised and because she is, must play the hand that she is dealt. But that does not mean she is completely heartless. The birth of Clara’s son reveals her humanity and her ability to change.

Which is why she is a memorable character.

Advertisement

Politics Book Reviews: Battling the Big Lie: How Fox, Facebook, and the MAGA Media Are Destroying America & Allow Me to Retort: A Black Guy’s Guide to the Constitution

It would be easy to think that those who we elect to speak for our needs in the halls of power are doing their jobs. A deeper dive reveals a lust for power, the need for influence to fill one own pocket, and the lack of care/responsibility to those who put them in office.

Battling the Big Lie: How Fox, Facebook, and the MAGA Media Are Destroying America, by Dan Pfeiffer, was published last month. In short, it describes how both the carelessness of the social media companies and a right-wing conspiracy nearly led to the annihilation of this nation and our democracy. He also talks about how we can fight back and stop the lies before they destroy us.

Allow Me to Retort: A Black Guy’s Guide to the Constitution, by Elie Mystal, was published in March. Mystal takes the legalese out of the Constitution and explains them in a way that anyone would understand. Complete with pop culture references and the occasional f-bomb, Mystal points out what is wrong with the law (i.e. racism, sexism, anti-LGBTQ sentiment, etc), and how we can prevent the white patriarchy from dragging us back into the past.

What we need right now are two things: hope and a kick in the behind. These books provide both. By writing laymen’s terms, both Pfeiffer and Mystal are giving the average citizens the tools we need to fight against the growing threats of theocracy and fascism.

Do I recommend them both? Absolutely.

Battling the Big Lie: How Fox, Facebook, and the MAGA Media Are Destroying America and Allow Me to Retort: A Black Guy’s Guide to the Constitution are available wherever books are sold.

American Flag Veterans Day GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

Three Ordinary Girls: The Remarkable Story of Three Dutch Teenagers Who Became Spies, Saboteurs, Nazi Assassins–and WWII Heroes Book Review

When fighting an invading army, there are two ways to go about it. The first is to join the government-created and regulated military. The second is to become a member of the underground resistance and fight using whatever methods you have at your disposal.

Three Ordinary Girls: The Remarkable Story of Three Dutch Teenagers Who Became Spies, Saboteurs, Nazi Assassins–and WWII Heroes, by Tim Brady, was published in February. When Nazi Germany invaded the Netherlands in May of 1940, Hannie Schaft and sisters Truus and Freddie Oversteegen were not yet twenty. Angered by the invasion and the treatment of the Dutch people, they joined the resistance. Their task was two-fold: to save as many of their Jewish friends and neighbors while doing everything they could to stop the German army in its tracks.

This book is amazing. It is a heart-pounding, blood-pumping, thriller of a ride. What these girls did is nothing short of awe-inspiring. Giving the middle finger to the enemy and the patriarchy, they fought for their freedom and their lives while others were content to remain silent or fall in line with the Nazi regime. They are heroes in every sense of the word and should always be remembered as such.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

%d bloggers like this: