(Something about this novel just screams "endless airport layover," for some reason.)
Where did we leave Our Heroes? Ah, yes...
P. 146: Rowland, last seen defending the Christian fort against infidels who think it's OK to go to the theater, is now succumbing to the urge to...go to the theater. Cue dramatic gasps.
P. 147: Luckily, he has an epiphany during Hamlet, and will never venture into these damnable environs again. And just when things were getting exciting!
P. 149: Apparently, going to plays inevitably results in illicit sex.
Pp. 149-50: Two ladies of the evening have just wandered through. (On a serious scholarly note: the novel's relative sexual explicitness--in the sense that someone unaccustomed to Victorian sexual "codes" would immediately know what's going on--is typical of even religious fiction in the 1830s.)
P. 158: Now, Rowland is lying to conceal his trip to the theater. This is by far the most drama we've had yet.
P. 160: Speaking of Rowlands, now Rowland Hill puts in an appearance. Not as a zombie, unfortunately.
P. 162: Followed hard on his heels by Isaac Milner. What is this, Hollywood Squares--Episcopal Edition?
P. 164: And now we have a sermon from the evangelical Henry Foster.
P. 168: Foster was still alive at the time this novel was published, so one cannot but suspect a bit of clerical buttering-up here.
P. 169: YES!!! It's another zombie! Alphonsus Gunn, who died in 1806 (as in two years before the publication of Marmion, infelicitously quoted in our previous installment). *fist pump*
I'm wondering if there are any serious theological implications for Preaching while Zombified. I mean, it's hardly likely to be aesthetically pleasing, but...
P. 175: We're breaking out the "foreboding dread" again. Which half of this romantic couple will die before the novel is over? Stay tuned!
Pp. 181-82: And now for a brief word from our sponsors, while we discuss fertilizer.
P. 183: If you want a recipe for raisin wine, it's on this page.
P. 185: Eeek! The wine has been accidentally poisoned! Let's have a scientific explanation of the antidote: "'Hasten with all your speed, and administer to him this strong decoction of bark. It has a great affinity to oxygen, and will therefore effectually counteract the sugar of lead dissolved in the wine, which, being a metallic poison, is baneful, on account of the oxygen it contains.'"
On this dramatic note, we pause, as there are welcome signs of incipient boarding afoot.