Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Phineas Finn” as Want to Read:
Phineas Finn
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Read Book* *Different edition

Phineas Finn (Palliser #2)

3.96  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,497 Ratings  ·  204 Reviews
The handsome Phineas Finn's political and romantic entanglements are explored with zest when he becomes an Irish member of the House of Commons. How will the Reform Bill fare? And will Lady Laura Standish, Violet Effingham, Mary Flood Jones or Marie Goesler win his hand?
Audiobook, 0 pages
Published 2010 by BBC Audiobooks (first published January 1st 1869)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Phineas Finn, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Phineas Finn

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jan 15, 2013 Greg rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Phineas Finn: The Irish Member isn't about an Irish penis.

Rather, it is about a young Irish gentleman who who gets himself elected to the British House of Commons and the manner that he navigates through the very exciting legislative time period surrouding the Second Reform Bill!

I bet I had you clicking the 'to-read' button there, but please don't be in such a rush and tear off to your amazon, your neighborhood bookstore, get on your reading device or head over to to get yo
Elizabeth (Alaska)
Sometimes the hardest thing you'll ever do is to do the right thing. How do you weigh the cost of the sacrifice between two objectives - both of which are dear to you, and which are mutually exclusive? Ok, so those might be bigger questions than Trollope had in mind when he wrote Phineas Finn. But then again, maybe not.

The Goodreads description makes this sound dry, dry, dry. It is decidedly not so. It does have the backdrop of political maneuvering, and in fact the reader spends time in the Hou
I have just begun. I have only completed chapter 10:

Delightfully funny!!!!!!!

EVERYBODY must try a Trollope. He does not deliver the normal Victorian brew. I am NOT a reader of the Victorian genre. Trollope's are something different; Trollope's are special.

I am sitting here thinking of all those like me who before trying Trollope have no idea that such exists.

IF you have not read Trollope - please do me a favor and try one.

Delightful humor. You read them for their humor. Sweet humor. Subtle,
As I re-read many of Anthony Trollope's novels, I find myself revising my rating of them upward. It seems that there are few authors I positively enjoy reading as much as Trollope. There are some, very few, of his works that I do not care for that much; but, for the most part, I find his oeuvre to be remarkably consistent in its appeal and its innate excellence.

In Phineas Finn, we have the story of the eponymous hero, a handsome young Irishman of twenty-three, who comes to make his fortune in En
I enjoyed this novel of Phineas Finn, a young and somewhat naive young man who stands for Parliament in the mid 19th century. I admit that Finn did grow on me. I thought initially that this would be a fairly dull or dry novel but the characters really shine on the page. I didn't think that it would even come close to the enjoyment level of Can You Forgive Her? but it is a worthy, very worthy novel in it's own right.
Nov 18, 2015 Caroline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 19th-c-england
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Anastasia Fitzgerald-Beaumont
Now I’ve finished Finn! Sorry for the awful pun. I’ve finished reading Phineas Finn, the Irish Member, the second volume of Anthony Trollope’s Palliser series of six politically-themed novels. It’s long, in excess of seven hundred pages, but on the whole entertaining and diverting.

The book touches on politics at a whole number of levels. There is the obvious parliamentary dimension, with a thorough-going exploration of the great question of the day, namely that of electoral reform (it was writt
Trollope is in high form here. It's 700+ pages of deliciously complex interpersonal relationships. Difficult decisions, falling in and out of love, good marriages and bad, coincidence and fate. It's great writing plus great soap opera.

As usual, Trollope's respect for women's intelligence and sensitivity comes through loud and clear. He was hardly a feminist (he makes fun of the real feminists of the time - the suffragettes and bluestockings), so it's a bit hard to explain - but you can tell he
Oct 03, 2014 Jane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I fell in love with Can You Forgive Her, my first Trollope and my first Palliser novel, and when I had to leave that book behind I knew that if wouldn’t be too long before I stepped back into Trollope’s world with the next novel in this particular sequence. The fact that this was the novel where politics came to the fore worried me a little, but it wasn’t a problem; I was pulled right into the human story by the same storyteller I had come to love as I read that first book.

Phineas Finn himself w
Bruno Bouchet
Jul 03, 2011 Bruno Bouchet rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I love the insights into the political process in this book and seeing how it’s changed so little over 150 years – although the idea of an MP being able to be independent from his party simply because he wasn’t part of the Government would be a great idea now - obviously from before the days of the three line whip. I know many reviewers say it, but it’s worth repeating, Trollope is such a great chronicler of his times – he simply calls it like he sees it, and when he does offer opinions, makes t ...more
Emma Deplores Goodreads Censorship
I've been at this one for a month and only gotten 225 pages into it, out of 712. Enough. There are too many books in the world for this.

This isn't a horrendous book, but I see little to explain why it's survived from the mid-19th century. The characters are not particularly engaging, nor the prose impressive, nor is there any particular insight into human psychology or behavior. It might be ideal for someone studying 19th century British politics, but this meandering trek through the life of an
Free download available at Project Gutenberg.

Free audio version available at LibriVox.

It's the system as I hates, and you, Mr Finn. Well good-bye, Sir.
Millais reproduced from the first edition published by Virtue and Company in 1869

This is the second book of the Palisser series, being the sequel of Can You Forgive Her?

Phineas Finn is a young Irishman who becomes a member of the English parliament. Due to his position, be comes in love with several woman: Lady Laura Standish, Mary Jones - a child
Lindsey Strachan
Phineas Finn, being the second novel of Trollope's Palliser series, has much to live up to by comparison with earlier Trollope works such as the Barset novels, which contain some of the finest examples of classic English literature. By and large, it does not disappoint.

I wont summarise the plot as others have done so better than I ever could. It is an entertaining account of a young man's progress through London society of the 1860s, particularly the politics of the period. The 1860s was a peri
Sarah Magdalene
Apr 22, 2013 Sarah Magdalene rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Phineas Finn - Anthony Trollope

Trollope is my therapy. He is the one sure fire cure for life sickness. I think it’s because he’s so human, so unpretentious and so kind hearted.
And Phineas Finn is a lovely boy, charming and yet not a rogue. I like reading books about people who I like, especially when they don’t suffer too much (just a little). It restores my faith in the ultimate goodness of life, and that is a sorely needed tonic.

Trollopes characters are so tangible, so real, and mostly very ap
Dec 10, 2009 Al rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The second volume of Trollope's Palliser series. Be warned: Trollope is not for everyone. But it is for me. I love the relaxed pace of the books, and the detailed character studies. This book's cast is particularly interesting, and one of the appeals is that Trollope's characters, while representative of their era, are never boring or predictable.
The books are long (this one is 700+ pages), but one doesn't mind. In a stately Victorian way, it's a page turner. Will our hero succeed in his ambi
Jul 04, 2014 Peter rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Phineas Finn offers much promise in both plot and character, and yet the novel did not deliver either in a sustained or compelling manner. Now I know Trollope will neither create Hardy's deep Tragic vision, or romp through London like Dickens's larger-than-life bizarre characters, but I did want something to hold my attention, to demand me to continue reading, to offer me some glimpses of such engaging successes such as The Warden or Barchester Towers or Can You Forgive Her?

The fault could lie w
Laurel Hicks
Such interesting people Trollope leads us to love and hate! This is the second book in the Palliser series.
Nov 08, 2012 Bonnie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book took a little while to grow on me, but I found it interesting and enjoyable. It wasn't as compelling as the first book in the series, but I did like it a lot. I'm not terribly familiar with the British parliamentary system, that is, how "governments" are formed and changed when another party gains control. This book was very much concerned with Parliament since the main character, Phineas Finn, becomes a member. I found the main character likeable and the other characters well done. Ma ...more
Mary Ronan Drew
Nov 06, 2012 Mary Ronan Drew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Phineas Finn, the young Irishman come to London to study to be a barrister, is one of the most engaging characters in all of Anthony Trollope's books. He is the son of a country doctor, a gentleman but without any money except what his father allows him as an allowance, but he has something more important, luck. Combined with his charm and a gift of friendship, his luck takes him into the highest circles of Whig politics and before long into a seat in parliament. . . .

To read the rest of my revi
It's hard for me to know what to say about this book - Trollope is one of my favorite authors, and I enjoyed almost the entire book, but thought the ending was somewhat of a letdown. It just didn't seem to be particularly true to the characters, and I didn't think it boded well for the future happiness of the "hero" (as Trollope so loves to identify his heroes and heroines). I supposed I will have to read the next books in the Palliser series to find out how things go. The descriptions of Parlia ...more
Rowland Bismark
Phineas Finn, a young Irishman just admitted to the bar, was elected to Parliament from Loughshane through the support of his father's old friend Lord Tulla. His genial temperament soon won him many highly placed friends in London society, among them Lady Laura Standish.

Although Phineas was in a sense committed to marry a childhood sweetheart, Mary Jones, he fell in love with Lady Laura. She, however, had sacrificed her fortune to pay the debts of her brother Lord Chiltern, and valued her positi
Justin Evans
Jan 26, 2011 Justin Evans rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Honestly, so far I prefer Barchester to Parliament as far as Trollope's series go. This is probably a bit funnier, and the plot is certainly more impressive, but his style is much tamer and less interesting. There's very little of the authorial intrusion that makes the earlier Barsetshire novels so entertaining, and the writing in general is invisible. That's no mean feat, but I also miss the hyper-irony of Barchester Towers or even Doctor Thorne. Also, as with most authors, the longer his books ...more
Apr 22, 2013 Eugenia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I first read the Palliser novels in graduate school and now I'm re-reading them again. I adore all these books only slightly less now than I did then, and only because I'm slightly more interested in middle-aged people in fiction than in young ones (so maybe it's time to give the Barsetshire novels another try). Trollope is astonishingly frank for a Victorian about love, sex, money, drink, extreme sports and other scrapes that young people (and sometimes older ones) get into. His women are all a ...more
Mar 14, 2012 Ed rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I chose "e-book" since goodreads doesn't have a "Nook" category.

Phineas Finn is an intelligent and very ambitious young man the only son of an Irish doctor. While studying with a London barrister so that he can be admitted to the bar himself Finn is approached by an acquaintance at his club and asked to stand for Parliament in the small borough where his family lives. Through a stroke of good luck he is successful and goes back to London as a member of Parliament.

He woos and loses several women
Mary Ann
Dec 30, 2012 Mary Ann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I very much enjoyed reading Phineas Finn, the second in Trollope's Palliser Chronicles. The story is about a young man from Ireland who rises from nothing to be an admired member of the House of Commons. He does not come from money, so he needs to gain a position in the government in order to earn a salary, as being a member of Parliament does not in itself pay anything. He tries and fails to become engaged to several women, fighting a duel at one point. Phineas' position in government becomes p ...more
Nicole Smith
Jun 23, 2015 Nicole Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this as an audiobook – good choice! The reader was great. It was fun to hear the characters come to life, and to have the accent my mental reading could not have done justice to.

I can't decide if I liked the first book in the series better or this one better. It did surprise me how little overlap/ connection there was between this book and the first book in the series. I'm curious to see how this plays out over the rest of the books.
Steve Mayer
Sep 12, 2015 Steve Mayer rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. The description of Nineteenth Century Parliament and its political maneuvering; the finely drawn characters, who changed in measurable and all-too-human ways as the novel went on; and the love affair(s) all grabbed. So much so that i went immediately to Phineas Redux, when I finished, despite having vowed to take a break from Trollope. (Already read The Eustace Diamonds, which comes between Phineas Finn and Phineas Redux.)
Sep 14, 2011 Hazel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Phineas himself doesn't quite convince. There isn't much more to him than good looks, a pleasing manner and a desire to please. Perhaps it's this last that makes him so attractive to women? But, no, I don't really buy it. He is what my mother would call one confused bootoo; not too bright and without a shred of self-knowledge; fickle, short-sighted and self-serving.

But what interesting women characters Trollope creates for him, with far more complex internal lives, ambitions and conflicting des
May 07, 2014 Patricia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am somewhere between 4 and 5 stars. Not so much vacillating as hating the star system more than usual these days. I am re-reading some of it as the Victorians! chose it for the next book. I was fascinated with it and adored much of it when I was 22. The Palliser series will never be as the magnificent Barset books for me, but Trollope is always truly exceptional.
Phineas Finn is a middle class young Irish man who aspires to greatness in the British government. But as we all know, getting elected takes a bankroll and Phineas' modest background is not enough. But as a handsome man with significant charm, he looks to marry a rich woman so he can rise in the ranks of Parliament. I found this practical and mercenary view of marriage to be a little upsetting. I realize that we tolerate women playing the role of using beauty and charm to form an advantageous ma ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Exploring Anthony...: Phineas Finn 2 11 Feb 16, 2014 03:31PM  
  • Born in Exile
  • Marius the Epicurean
  • The Hand of Ethelberta
  • The Absentee
  • The Monastery
  • Amelia
  • The History of Henry Esmond, Esq.
  • Miss Marjoribanks (Chronicles of Carlingford, #5)
  • Scenes of Clerical Life
  • Poor Miss Finch
  • The Adventures of Peregrine Pickle
  • Aurora Floyd
  • East Lynne
  • Albigenses
  • Virgin Soil
  • The Stechlin
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)
  • The Eustace Diamonds (Palliser, #3)
  • Phineas Redux
  • The Prime Minister (Palliser #5)
  • The Duke's Children (Palliser, #6)

Share This Book

“There is nothing in the world so difficult as that task of making up one's mind. Who is there that has not longed that the power and privilege of selection among alternatives should be taken away from him in some important crisis of his life, and that his conduct should be arranged for him, either this way or that, by some divine power if it were possible, - by some patriarchal power in the absence of divinity, - or by chance, even, if nothing better than chance could be found to do it? But no one dares to cast the die, and to go honestly by the hazard. There must be the actual necessity of obeying the die, before even the die can be of any use.” 27 likes
“I hate a stupid man who can't talk to me, and I hate a clever man who talks me down. I don’t like a man who is too lazy to make any effort to shine; but I particularly dislike the man who is always striving for effect. I abominate a humble man, but yet I love to perceive that a man acknowledges the superiority of my sex, and youth and all that kind of thing. . . A man who would tell me that I am pretty, unless he is over seventy, ought to be kicked out of the room. But a man who can't show me that he thinks me so without saying a word about it, is a lout.” 16 likes
More quotes…