Monday, 27 October 2008

In praise of bad boys in literature

The bad boy has had a long and illustrious career in literature. He is the novelistic equivalent of cuban heels, skinny jeans and fags behind the bike shed. Think of the appeal of that ultimate bad boy, Satan the fallen angel in Paradise Lost. Think too of Henry Crawford in Mansfield Park and how we long for Fanny to accept him instead of mooning about after the worthy Edmund. Mr Darcy and his breeches thrill today's TV audiences. Poor old Tom Brown got only one novel and a little-known sequel, but Flashman who was a bully at Rugby School and a dashing if accidental hero afterwards, got a whole series. Then there's Mr Rochester - mean, moody, magnificent and with a mad wife in the attic. But then, perhaps we should take a tip from Jane Eyre who only consents to be with Mr Rochester after he is brought low by fire and injury. When it comes to a bad boy, "Reader, don't marry 'em."


  1. Yes, you must, if you get chance, watch K19: the Widowmaker, I never fancied watching it but it was on Four one evening and I was hooked. It is extermely good.

    Ally xxxx

  2. Thanks Ally. I thought I liked the look of it but it's even better to get a recommendation.