About Tales Plainly Told

Reading From Homer
Tales Plainly Told reviews quality literature, some recent, some not; but all of it good.

Q: How did you come up with the title for your blog?

I didn’t; Shakespeare and Homer did.  Shakespeare wrote: “An honest tale speeds best being plainly told” (Richard III).  Homer, in the Odyssey, said: “It is tedious to tell again tales already plainly told.”  After following some literary review blogs, I found that the authors’ own literary ambitions sometimes overshadowed the key point of the blogs: to tell readers about good books.  Hence Tales PLAINLY told.

Q: Why does your front page all show women reading?

Part of it is that I needed pictures of a certain shape and size for the layout, but more to the point, it’s the genre and the period. Victorian and Edwardian painters had a thing for portraying women reading; I suspect it had to do with their fixation on portraying women as creatures of leisure in the domain of the home. Maybe it was a reaction against the nascent suffragette movement of the turn of the century – who knows? Anyway, the pictures are nice.