Under the Wide and Starry Sky by Nancy Horan Summary Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Under the Wide and Starry Sky

Plot Summary Part 3

Louis writes Treasure Island and finally gets famous and starts making money. Then he writes Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, which we are told is a sexual story. This confuses me. Neither Jekyll or Hyde bone anyone in this story. But somehow Fanny considers this a sexual story, and it upsets Fanny.

Fanny wondered if Louis had hidden sexual urges. She knew he had a lot of homosexual friends who "fell in love with him", and wondered if Louis had a "Mr. Hyde" side of himself that liked to bone them in the ass. Fanny recalled the feminine and "gay" way that Louis sometimes talked. It disturbed her to think that Louis might be a bone smuggler or rump ranger. P_nis, Fanny felt certain, was meant for v_gina, not the anus's of feminine men.

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When Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is published, newspapers also compared Mr. Hyde's inclinations to ass-sex, which only disturbed Fanny even more. But the story made Louis even more famous.

For a while they lived in Saranac in upstate New York. They got a letter from Henley, Louis's writer friend, which accused Fanny of stealing another writer's story. Fanny admitted that she had taken someone else's idea and made some changes to it before writing her own, but claimed she got permission. But Henley was accusing her of being a plagiarist, and this upset Louis and Fanny for pages and pages and pages and pages.

Personally, I couldn't care less whether Fanny was a plagiarist or not. Louis is the famous writer in the story. Fanny is not. Why should the reader care?

At one point Fanny's son Sammy, who finds out that his father boned other women, changes his name to Lloyd. It's very weird, but it could have been worse--he could have changed it to Lilly instead, heh heh.

Louis gets sick for the 100th time. Doctors say that Louis needs sea air, so he goes to the south pacific. They board a ship. Louis feels better, but Fanny gets seasick. Once again they have to move to uncomfortable places to keep Louis well.

The rest of the book is basically a travelogue covering the islands of the South Pacific. Louis and Fanny move to an island. They build a house. They plant crops. They meet neighbors. Two neighboring chiefs we don't know about and don't care about are fighting each other. Louis sides with one over the other. So little happens on these islands that the biggest event is the weather.

There is one mysterious reference to a time when Fanny goes crazy and she has to be tied down to her bed, but no explanation for her craziness or her recovery.

But the rest of the book is the mundane details of living on a South Pacific island. Louis writes articles about life there, but they are rejected by newspapers because they are so boring.

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