I know that we're not actually more in the dark today than we were yesterday, but when the clocks have rolled back an hour and the sun has gone down by 4:36 p.m., it feels as though the day has shortened measurably. (Which, in fact, it has: we lose nearly four minutes of daylight each day here, and our length of visible light is down to just under 11 hours.)
So: thank goodness for George Eliot, whose Romola (1862-3) is blowing my mind. I couldn't have known that I was giving myself a great gift for late October 2007 when I continued not-reading Romola for all those years. But I was. I was just saving my last Eliot novel for exactly the right time--which is now. I don't think it's where I'd tell you to start, if you were to decide you wanted to get to know her work. But it's damned fine.