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The Whirlpool

3.79  ·  Rating Details ·  77 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Harvey Rolfe's modest inheritance allows him to live quietly on the edge of the social and commercial bustle of London. But despite his efforts at detachment, books and private pleasures provide him with no real refuge. Bankruptcy and suicide bring the world's tumult to his door, together with Alma Frothingham.
Paperback, 458 pages
Published May 15th 1997 by J.M. Dent / Everyman (first published 1897)
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Sep 12, 2014 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: george-gissing
This is my favourite Gissing novel - everything close and
bitter to his heart came together in this book - dysfunctional
families, (Gissing was an expert) women's vanity and his very
forward thinking ideas on children's development. The 1890s
were the time of his greatest literary success but privately
he was in the depths of despair.
Harvey Rolfe (who was Gissing's voice in the novel) marries
Alma Frothingham. There are ominous signs before they are wed.
Alma's philosophy is that she wants to live lif
Aug 25, 2011 Howard rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is the story of upper-middle class late-Victorian families/couples following the collapse of a bank. This is Gissing's last big novel written in 1897.

The real drama centres around Alma, a young girl of 20, who's father's shameful performance lead to the banks losses and his suicide. She has to go abroad to make plans and further her questionable musical career; she has two admirers follow her Cyrus Redgrave a wealthy bachelor (who makes an indecent proposal in the most understated Victoria
Kevin Varney
Yeah, not bad. Unlike the three other Gissing books that I have read, this one is about the idle rich. To me, it did not seem a million miles away from a contemporary book. The attitudes are late Victorian, but the writing style is literary fiction. The book it reminded me most of was Anne Tyler's An Amateur Marriage, although, thinking back, An Amateur Marriage was better written.
Jul 30, 2016 Kurishin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not a timeless novel in the manner of Madame Bovary but a novel that has withstood the test of time well to commentate on late Victorian upper class society and family. Blackmail, gender inequality, education, and country vs London life are also active themes. Probably appeals to Anglophiles more than others.
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George Robert Gissing was an English novelist who published twenty-three novels between 1880 and 1903. From his early naturalistic works, he developed into one of the most accomplished realists of the late-Victorian era.
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