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The Hireling

3.74 of 5 stars 3.74  ·  rating details  ·  121 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Emotionally paralyzed by grief at her husband's death, Lady Franklin, an eligible young widow, unburdens herself to Leadbitter--a gallant, hard-bitten ex-soldier who has invested his savings, and himself, in the car he drives for hire--as he takes her on a series of journeys. He in turn beguiles her with stories of his nonexistent wife and children thereby weaning her from ...more
Paperback, Twentieth Century Classics, 240 pages
Published July 27th 1989 by Capuchin Press (first published 1957)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 211)
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karen
why do i do it?? as soon as i notice a hartley book has come back in print, i run right out and i buy it and i read it and now im back to where i started... no more hartley...but still and all... i liked it very much and am glad it is available again. more, please...
Dorcas
Jul 13, 2015 Dorcas marked it as did-not-finish
Made it halfway through but I'm just not feeling this, I really don't like the main character and that's a drag. But who knows, some day I may run out of books and will pick it up again ...
Griselda
Such a disappointment after The Go-Between. Leadbitter develops into an intriguing character over the first two chapters in contrast with the insipid Lady Franklin, then, suddenly, the narrative changes tone and direction.
Amy
Just a few pages in he used one of my favorite phrases ("the old moon in the new moon's arms") AND I learned a new word: martinet. If you know what that means off the top of your head, I'll give you a cookie.

I had four goals today.
1. Plan and wear an outfit built around my new velour sweatshirt with the fox logo.
2. Make a mother culture for cheese.
3. Finish this book.
4. PIZZA!

Thanks to everyone who helps me live my dreams every day. A special thanks to Leslie Poles Hartley for writing such a fun
...more
jennifer
Wonderfully sad book. A chauffeur falls for the wealthy young widow who hires him during her grieving.Hartley was an expert storyteller and it's a shame that he's been largely forgotten.
Carey Combe
A bitter sweet and moving story. Characters brilliantly drawn.
Jo Weston
An abridged BBC R4 dramatisation, but it reminded me of a well loved read from my teenage years. A real pleasure
Andrew
L.P. Hartley writes using sharp, biting metaphors. He has a fantastic feel of Englishness, as defined by the upstairs-downstairs divide. This makes a very good reading. The book hasn't aged gracefully and still delivers. Highly recommended, if you're interested in the way the English used to go around amorous matters. These days we supposedly live in a classless society, partly because the titled new generation quite often has no class at all. Just read the papers.
Minna
More 3 and a half.

I think, after loving 'The Go-Between' and 'The Shrimp and the Anemone', my expectations were just astronomically high, and this just didn't quite meet them. I did enjoy it a lot, and the characters were very interesting, but this was nothing phenomenal.
Gillian
An intimately scaled novel that pulls you into the divergent minds of two people in a strange and sad relationship. Psychologically acute.
Bettie☯
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
David
This is a better book than the film which it inspired.
Jonathon Ball
Jonathon Ball marked it as to-read
Aug 19, 2015
Grace
Grace marked it as to-read
Jul 12, 2015
Loida Pan
Loida Pan marked it as to-read
Jun 21, 2015
lexie chapman
lexie chapman marked it as to-read
May 18, 2015
Brad
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May 16, 2015
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May 14, 2015
Becky
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Apr 29, 2015
Mollie Westhead
Mollie Westhead marked it as to-read
Mar 28, 2015
Bori
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Jan 12, 2015
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