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The Eustace Diamonds (Palliser #3)

3.93  ·  Rating Details  ·  2,728 Ratings  ·  197 Reviews
Anthony Trollope's celebrated Parliamentary novels, of which The Eustace Diamonds (1873) is the third and most famous, are at once unfailingly amusing social comedies, melodramas of greed and deception, and precise nature studies of the political animal in its mid-Victorian habitat. With its purloined jewels, its conniving, resilient, mercenary heroine, and its partiality ...more
Hardcover, 2 pages
Published November 3rd 1992 by Everyman's Library (first published 1873)
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Dec 09, 2015 Caroline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 19th-c-england

Trollope said to Thackery: 'I’ll see your Becky Sharp, and raise you 10,000.’

As in the 10,000 necklace--the Eustace Diamonds--that drive Lizzie Graystock and the plot of this funny and sad and insightful novel.

I have read too many Trollope sweet young girls, and enjoyed his witty, strong (to a point) women Lady Glencora and Violet Effingham, and laughed with the earthy wealthy widow in the Barsetshire novels, but Lizzie is something else again. Trollope is really masterful in conveying
May 06, 2016 Cphe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The third novel in The Palliser series and an enjoyable read in it's own right. It is the greedy and manipulative Lizzie Eustace who holds the plot together. This is also a lengthy character driven novel. To my mind Trollope's female characters are always well presented, faults, foibles and all. They very much overshadow the male characters in their verve and flair.

My only quibble with this my mind the ending, "fate" of Lizzie Eustace was a bit of a let down for this reader. After
From BBC Radio 4 - Classical Serial:
Anthony Trollope's enthralling novel about beautiful but deceitful widow Lizzie Eustace.

This is the third book of the Palliser series where the characters of Plantagenet Palliser, his wife Lady Glencora and their uncle the ailing Duke of Omnium are in the background.

The plot describes the life of a fortune-hunter, Lizzie Greystock who marries Sir Florian Eustace. One month later of their marriage, Sir Florian dies and leaves his fortune to Lizzie and his son.

Book Riot Community
Poor Lizzie Eustace! Widowed at a young age, she’s now being asked to give up the valuable diamonds that her late husband gave her to be her very own–or so she says. Lizzie’s lies and other hijinks in her effort to keep “her” diamonds while finding her next husband make this a highly entertaining and humorous read. Although Lizzie gets the most attention, the book contains a large cast of characters, and the women are especially well-written. There’s Lucy Morris, a governess who longs to marry F ...more
Funny, after finishing the first 2 chapters I was thinking Lizzie Eustace was very like Becky Sharp. I rolled that around in my mind for a bit until the next time I had a chance to pick up the book. What do I read at the beginning of chapter three but that Trollope assures us that she won't be exactly a Becky Sharp and that such a character doesn't deserve heroine status anyway. :)

Liked that there was less politics in this one than the last in the series, but it also lacked totally sympathetic
Aug 19, 2011 Emily rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: I'd rec skipping this one
Recommended to Emily by: Book series given as gift
This is the third book in Trollope's Palliser series and a huge disappointment compared to the previous volumes. There are a few interesting sections, but I had to force myself to get through it and skimmed the last 100 pages or so. Trollope tries to play on the foibles of human personalities and ambitions, but falls so flat with these characters that I just wanted to smack them all upside the head. Even Lizzie's lying and conniving got repetitive and uninspired and I lost interest in whether th ...more
Elizabeth (Alaska)
Another fun story from Mr. Trollope. His opening lines:
It was admitted by all her friends, and also by her enemies, -- who were in truth the more numerous and active body of the two, -- that Lizzie Greystock had done very well with herself. We will tell the story of Lizzie Greystock from the beginning, but we will not dwell over it at great length, as we might do if we loved her.
Perhaps Mr. Trollope forgot himself, for the majority of the novel is about Lizzie Greystock, but he was right in that
Stephen Harrigan
Probably should take off a star for repetitiveness, occasional windiness and bagginess, but Lizzie Eustace is an indelible character and this is one of the best marriages of a mystery and a novel of manners in fiction. Plus Trollope's dialogue is so startlingly direct and modern there's not the slightest taint of literary mustiness.
Chris Gager
Jul 28, 2016 Chris Gager rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My first Trollope and it's about time. I really enjoyed "The Barchester Chronicles" when it was on PBS many years ago. So far this is a pretty smooth read. I skipped a very long introduction by some literary fanatic. I may read it later on. Interesting to compare Trollope to someone like Hawthorne. So much the better writer! Seems like the general rule was that 19th century English writers were much easier and more enjoyable to read than their American counterparts. I suspect that the above-ment ...more
Oct 21, 2014 Jane rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh, what a maddening book!

As I read there were moments when I thought this might be my favourite Trollope (to date) and there were moments when I thought it would be at the bottom of the list.

In the end I did like it. But ….

The story spins around Lizzie Greystock, who will quickly rise to become Lady Eustace.

Lizzie was the only child of the disreputable Admiral Greystock, who died leaving her nothing but debts. Fortunately her daughter had learned to live by her wits, and she realised that to ma
Jun 11, 2008 Hazel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
On a whim, I decided that I needed to read Trollope's "Paliser"/Parlimentary Tales series. Although this book was not considered by Trollope to be part of the series proper, The Eustace Diamonds is a great satire reminiscent of Thackeray's "A Vanity Fair" (another must-read for those who dig 19th century Brit Lit). Trollope writes of aptly named Lizzie Graystock, who becomes Lizzie Eustace when she convinces a Lord to marry her. His untimely demise leaves her holding the family diamonds; the Eus ...more
Mar 09, 2011 Bev rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic-lit
The Eustace Diamonds (1873) is the third novel in Anthony Trollope's Palliser series. However, this is the first Trollope novel I've read--picked out initially for the jewel in the title to fulfill part of the What's in a Name Challenge. I didn't find that stepping into the series in mid-stream hurt my understanding of the book at all. There weren't any references to people or incidents that weren't made clear in the work itself.

According to the blurb on the back of the book, this novel "bears
Apr 09, 2007 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: trollope
This is the third novel in Trollope's Palliser series, although the Pallisers themselves are largely offstage in it. The main characters in this novel are schemers and cheats of one sort or another. To the extent Trollope means to suggest that standards of conduct are in decline in English society, the novel is a forerunner of The Way We Live Now.

The diamonds of the title are a necklace, once the property of the late Florian Eustace. His widow claims that he made a gift of the necklace to her be
Mar 01, 2013 Jim rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Anastasia Fitzgerald-Beaumont
I’ve now completed The Eustace Diamonds, the third in Anthony Trollope’s Palliser series of political novels; another milestone passed; another three to go! I enjoyed Can you Forgive Her? and Phineas Finn, the Irish Member though not nearly as much as the story of Lizzie Eustace and a legacy which brings more trouble than pleasure. It seems to me that the author is much more assured here in his treatment of themes, of plotting and of character, his style much more relaxed, perceptive and gently ...more
Apr 19, 2014 Julie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Anthony Trollope’s books are usually pretty light hearted marriage plots where situations like class or annual income interfere with true love. But The Eustace Diamonds was different in a refreshing way. In addition to the typical conundrum of two people without any income falling in love, there is the added intrigue of politics and … gasp, a stolen diamond necklace. And not just any necklace, but a family heirloom valued at 10,000 pounds. The mystery of the stolen necklace definitely added a bi ...more
" 'It is very disagreeable,' said Lady Glencora, 'to believe that your wife has got the finest diamonds in England, and then to find out that she has only -- stolen them.' "

Starts off very strongly but then meanders for hundreds of pages. Originally written as a serial and then published in multiple volumes, which may be why the structure is a bit confusing. I'm not sure why this even qualifies as a Palliser novel when those characters crop up only a few times. But the insults are spectacular.

Nearly 800 pages of mid and high society people deceiving each other, engaging in mercenary behavior, and writing hilariously snarky letters back and forth to each other. Needless to say, I loved this and can't wait to read more Trollope. Surprisingly modern and somewhat cynical about human nature, with not a hero in sight.
Jun 30, 2014 Marti rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Although this is part of the Pallisers' series (and I have only read one other in the series many years ago) each installment can be read on its own. Lizzie Eustace, the heroine, is a selfish, grasping and domineering young woman who is the definition of a sociopath if they had used that term then. She becomes embroiled in a squabble with her recently deceased husband's estate over some valuable diamonds which, come hell or high water, she refuses to give up. Sure it's a big Victorian Soap opera ...more
Aug 26, 2015 Bill rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After Phineas Finn, this book feels like a time out from the Palliser series as the familiar characters recede into the background and we focus on the career of Lizzie Eustace. Knowing as I did that book 4 of the series was going to take us back to Phineas, I was at first impatient about slogging through this diversion, then I became interested enough in these characters to give them their due attention.

But what really made me start to love it was when I realized that Trollope was doing somethi
Crowded with lords and ladies and their cronies and hangers-on, hardly any single sympathetic character in sight. Makes for fun reading, because you don’t really care for anyone and are able to watch all their wriggling and writhing with amusement. It also makes you wish for the worst possible outcome for everyone involved. Or was it just me? Haha.

The narrator is insufferable, and his sympathies and antipathies made me go all contrary. I cheered for Lady Eustace (I agree with one of the previous
I was sitting in my living room, reading The Eustace Diamonds and was within 100 pages of the conclusion. My 13-year old daughter is on the sofa thoroughly engrossed in a Facebook games & chats. For no particular reason, I began to read aloud. Mind you, I have about 100 pages left of a 900 page book. Most of the action has occurred. Regardless of the fact that she knows nothing of the previous 800 pages. my daughter loses interest in Facebook, transferring her engrossment to Trollope. I fini ...more
Mar 31, 2010 Susan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-read
The third book in Trollope's political series that centers on the Pallisers. Lady Glencora plays a minor role in this book and so, really, does partisan politics.
The central character is Lizzie Eustace, a beautiful young woman who's recently widowed. Obviously her husband, Forian Eustace dies realizing he was "taken in" by a beautiful fortune hunter. Now Lizzie flaunts a 10,000 diamond necklace. She claims it's "hers" because he husband gave it to her; his attorneys claim it belongs to the esta
Bruno Bouchet
I found this the least enjoyable of the “Palliser’ novels so far. The main Palliser characters part of the chorus or approval or disapproval, with no real character development. Palliser’s attempts to decimalise the currency, were the only enjoyable exception (interesting that it was only achieved over a century later!).The central character of Lizzie was interesting enough and I did enjoy the way every man that came to see her was viewed as potential marriage material and she half fell in love ...more
Not an enjoyable read in the end. Trollope great gift is his ability to draw character. He can fill a book with dozens of fully sketched out people. However, Trollope's detailed description of the main character's, Lizzie Eustace, pschyopathy becomes repetitive and tiresome. His ability to depict such a personality is superb but the exhaustive recounting of the unlikeable heroine reads like a case study. But, there's more. Ick -- so much antisemitism! Just all these gratuitous references to borr ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rose A
Feb 16, 2016 Rose A rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I managed reading "The Eustace Diamonds" in fits and starts of liking it a great deal and finding it very tedious. Lizzie was almost too unpleasant to sympathise with (and I have a lot of sympathy for dislikeable female characters) but I admire Trollope's ability to portray unpleasant characters with wry humour and some sympathy. The plot had some really marvellous twists of ingenuity and absurdity and I was gripped by the end.
Eugenea Pollock
Nov 29, 2015 Eugenea Pollock rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love a big Victorian novel with many characters, intricate plots, sophisticated use of grammar, an educated vocabulary, and several layers of meaning; and when it comes with a host of illustrations as well, it's even better. Several years ago, I bought this at a used book sale, shelved it in my library, and forgot about it. A couple of weeks ago, I craved a hard copy, physical book and rediscovered this. Hence, I "met" one of the most devious, amoral, egocentric, manipulative protagonists imag ...more
Oct 14, 2015 Anne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Classic Trollope, with a "heroine" who rivals Scarlett O'Hara, Becky Sharp, and Undine Spragg for getting her way by hook or crook or batted lashes. Batted lashes do seem to have been the semi-respectable female weapon of choice back in the day. Also, diamonds weren't this girl's best friend.

Dear Lizzie Eustace. I always hope she'll get the "hero," even though I know the sweet little English rose and/or long-suffering Griselda will win in the end.
I enjoyed the experience of reading this book at a basic level simply because I love the way Trollope writes. This was definitely not my favorite of his, as I found the character of Lizzie Eustace to be over-the-top annoying, and I didn't have much respect for the other characters either. However, that is part of Trollope's point about his "heroes" and "heroines" - most people aren't particularly heroic. In general, though, I prefer to read about people with a few more redeeming qualities. I fou ...more
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Victorians!: Eustace Diamonds: Ch. 61-80 18 12 Aug 29, 2014 02:10AM  
Victorians!: Eustace Diamonds: Ch. 41-60 16 10 Aug 04, 2014 07:18PM  
Victorians!: Eustace Diamonds: Ch. 1-20 15 20 Jul 30, 2014 02:22AM  
Victorians!: Eustace Diamonds: Ch. 21-40 10 12 Jul 27, 2014 10:29AM  
Exploring Anthony...: The Eustace Diamonds 2 11 Feb 16, 2014 03:32PM  
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  • The Spoils of Poynton
  • The Bride of Lammermoor
  • Esther Waters
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  • Sylvia's Lovers
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Anthony Trollope became one of the most successful, prolific and respected English novelists of the Victorian era. Some of Trollope's best-loved works, known as the Chronicles of Barsetshire, revolve around the imaginary county of Barsetshire; he also wrote penetrating novels on political, social, and gender issues and conflicts of his day.

Trollope has always been a popular novelist. Noted fans ha
More about Anthony Trollope...

Other Books in the Series

Palliser (6 books)
  • Can You Forgive Her? (Palliser, #1)
  • Phineas Finn (Palliser, #2)
  • Phineas Redux
  • The Prime Minister (Palliser #5)
  • The Duke's Children (Palliser, #6)

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