The Headmaster's Papers

by RICHARD A. HAWLEY | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 0553341111 Global Overview for this book
Registered by jennannej of Coronado, California USA on 3/5/2005
Buy from one of these Booksellers: | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon IT |
4 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by jennannej from Coronado, California USA on Saturday, March 05, 2005
I was surprised to find that I really enjoyed this story. The entire story is told through letters, memos and other correspondence of a boys school headmaster. It seemed a bit ordinary to begin, and I assumed it would be one of those prep-school type stories. However, it really is an examination of the headmaster himself and his struggle with difficulties and loss.

A touching and sad story. I would recommend it.

(Being registered in the Race to Two Million Challenge)

Journal Entry 2 by jennannej from Coronado, California USA on Thursday, March 24, 2005
This is being offered as a ring/ray (I'm not sure if I want to hold on to it or just let it go forever). So here's the list. As soon as you receive the book, PM the next person on the list to give them some time to respond with their address. Please do journal the book when you've finished it. I'm sure we would all love to know what you thought.

I hope you enjoy this!

Here's the ring/ray order (subject to change)!

Mlbish (Pittsburgh, PA --ship US)
Bakerwhencan (San Fransisco, CA--ship anywhere)
Wee baby (Fairfax, VA - international)<----It's right here (Weebaby said on 2/14/06 that book would be sent within the week, Said this again on 10/7/07.)
Sqdancer (Canada--ship anywhere)
princess1984 (Canada, prefer Canada, ship anywhere)
AmyMS88 {TX, ship w/i US)
Morsecode(NY, w/i US)
tania-in-nc (NC, prefer w/i US, can surface)
olered, (OR, can ship surface to Australia)

(Possibly) Going down under (if I decide to ray, rather than ring, or if an Aussie wants to send it back):

Bookfairy65 (Australia--ship w/i AUS)
EDDI (Australia--ship w/i AUS)

Journal Entry 3 by mlbish from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania USA on Tuesday, May 31, 2005
Thanks very much! It looks great. Will read and pass along ASAP.

Journal Entry 4 by mlbish from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania USA on Tuesday, September 13, 2005
This is an epistolary novel, which means that it is composed entirely of a series of letters. It's told from the point of view of boys' school headmaster John Greeve, who writes letters to family, friends, colleagues, and the parents of students over the course of one school year.

Letters from John provide an interesting point of view. Events can only be described as he writes about them to other people, so reading the novel is a little like catching up with a friend periodically. Nothing happens in real time. The reader discovers everything after the fact, and only learns about it in terms of the headmaster's view of the situation. It is a unique perspective and, although it takes a little longer to be drawn into the book, one learns a great deal more about the main character because of the perspective.

Over the course of the novel, Mr. Greeve's life all but falls apart. It's heartbreaking to see so many terrible things happen to someone who is so inherently good. But he maintains his dignity throughout. I appreciated John's integrity. He stood firm on an issue he believed in, and was polite but unwavering when necessary. I had a lot of respect for many of the letters he wrote to colleagues and parents about happenings at the school.

This book should have been depressing. The main character has to face ordeal after ordeal, and in the end, the trials undo him. But it wasn't. It was sad, yes, and very poignant. But I was able to find hopefulness and honor, I guess, in a man who is so dignified in the face of his trials.

Journal Entry 5 by mlbish at bookring in bookring, Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Released 15 yrs ago (9/13/2005 UTC) at bookring in bookring, Bookring -- Controlled Releases



Sent to the next person. Thanks so much for sharing it. It was a lovely book!

Journal Entry 6 by bakerwhencan from San Francisco, California USA on Thursday, September 22, 2005
Arrived today! Thank you! I'll be back after reading.

Journal Entry 7 by mlbish from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania USA on Thursday, November 17, 2005
Please excuse the intrusion, bakerwhencan, but I wanted to share with you guys that I just discovered that there is a companion book to The Headmaster's Papers called (what else?) The Headmaster's Wife.

Here is a Booklist description (I'll give it a little space because it contains a slight spoiler for The Headmaster's Papers):

Hawley presents a haunting story of a woman who is slowly dying of cancer, as told through her last journal. Meg's self-conscious perspective of life, colored by her awareness of her terminal illness, is simultaneously caustic and touching. Railing against her own weakness, Meg also struggles to make her death less painful for her loving husband and mourns the loss of her son, Brian, whose absence is itself a presence throughout Meg's final days. Chemotherapy, radiation treatment, and even morphine cannot destroy Meg's indomitable spirit: up until her last breath, she shares her musings on the meaning of life, love, and everything in between. Written in a poetic but also deeply intimate style, Hawley's novel offers a compelling glimpse into the psychology of death.

Just wanted to share! Hope all you future readers enjoy the book.

...back to your regularly scheduled bookring programming... :-)

Journal Entry 8 by bakerwhencan from San Francisco, California USA on Friday, November 18, 2005
I just started this (sorry for delay, everyone!) and am a little less than halfway through. I am loving it so far! John Greeve is touching my soul right now. And, there is another book? Thank goodness. I may be attached.

I expect to be done in the next day or so, and will send off to Wee Baby.

Journal Entry 9 by bakerwhencan from San Francisco, California USA on Tuesday, November 22, 2005
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I loved the story through letters--- and with so many other types of communications these days, I appreciated the art of letters.

My favorite parts were the friendship with his brother, and the funny letters to the school's maintenance head.

I will send this off as soon as I receive Weebaby's address! Thank you jennannej for sharing this!

Journal Entry 10 by bakerwhencan from San Francisco, California USA on Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Sent off to Weebaby today! Thanks again for including me.

Journal Entry 11 by Weebaby from Fairfax, Virginia USA on Monday, December 12, 2005
received Saturday. I have the fortune to be able to start reading it today!

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