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Gone with the Wind

4.28  ·  Rating Details ·  858,961 Ratings  ·  15,342 Reviews
Margaret Mitchell's epic saga of love and war has long been heralded as The Great American Novel. Gone With the Wind explores the depths of human passions with indelible depictions of the burning fields and cities of Civil War and Reconstruction America. In the two main characters, the irresistible, tenacious Scarlett O'Hara and the formidable, debonair Rhett Butler, Marga ...more
Paperback, 75th Anniversary Edition, 959 pages
Published May 3rd 2011 by Scribner (first published 1936)
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Madeline Yes, older teens will like it, although some of the war talk and politics might not be so appealing to younger readers. Scarlett's plans for business…moreYes, older teens will like it, although some of the war talk and politics might not be so appealing to younger readers. Scarlett's plans for business dealings is another topic I would guess might not be as interesting either.

. The historical facts are very accurate even down to what the weather was like on the dates each battle was fought. The general storyline is so exciting and mesmerizing that I think a good reader will be swept up in a wonderful reading experience.

As to the slavery issue, much of Scarlett's relations to the slaves were based on Margaret Mitchell's own memories of the countless stories she heard from her older relatives about slaveholding. Not every slave owner was harsh and cruel which we are often led to believe. There were many kind owners who treated their slaves fairly and even like family.
It was a very emotional and passionate time in our history. It wasn't all black and white in anything. No pun intended., (less)

Community Reviews

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Eve Brown
Sep 29, 2007 Eve Brown rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I honestly do not know whether to give this book 5 stars for being one of the most completely engrossing, shocking, and emotionally absorbing pieces of literature ever written, or to give it 0 stars for being the most tragic, unendingly upsetting, disturbing book I've ever read. I read the last 50 pages or so literally with my mouth wide open, unable to believe that it was really going to be THAT tragically sad. When I finally finished, I walked downstairs in a daze, handed the book to my husban ...more
Brina
One of my reading themes for 2016 is reading at least ten classic books. It seems only fitting that on the Fourth of July I completed Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind, an epic masterpiece that many view as the definitive great American novel.

I feel that the two halves of the book mirror the southern United States before and after the Civil War. The first half of the book occurs primarily at Tara Plantation. We meet our main protagonist Scarlett O'Hara, the belle of the south, who epitomiz
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Nicko
Feb 25, 2008 Nicko rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Confederates
So much has been said in praise of this book it feels redundant to add more. In terms of the slave-holding society, the film actually toned-down the pro-South view of Reconstruction (Scarlett's second husband joined the KKK in the book) and Mammy remains probably one of the most fully-developed and likeable African-American characters from 1930 you'll read.

Rhett Butler is the consummate alpha male. This book is definitely the timeless classic reputation it has earned, and though at times it see
...more
Emily
Oct 11, 2015 Emily rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one.
Recommended to Emily by: "It's a classic!"
Shelves: novels
I received my copy of Gone With the Wind in 1991 and never got past the first 50 or 100 pages in any of my annual attempts at this books until 2004, at which point I decided to defeat the book one and for all. I FINALLY FINISHED READING THE DAMN BOOK.

I want my time back.

There was a reason I never before read past the first 50 or 100 pages - Scarlet is a raging evil snarky miserable bitch and I hate her. None of the other characters were particularly likable - ranging from sniveling, whiny sissie
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Lisa Kay
My mother wouldn't let me read "Gone With the Wind" until I was 16. A few years ago I was at a cocktail party and they asked the trivia question "What was the first line of GWtW?" I knew the answer. My husband asked, "How did you know that?" (He'd lived with me how many decades?) I told him about my mom's restriction and how, when I finally opened the book, I was stunned by the first sentence. I had seen the movie and Scarlett was beautiful, if a bitch. I also remember it because everyone always ...more
Fabian
Jan 15, 2017 Fabian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I’ve said it some time ago: GWTW the novel is like watching the ten hour director’s cut of GWTW the movie! Hell yeah!!! All the memorable scenes are there, & the spotlit romance is considerably widened in scope, as is the sturdy social studies lesson on the almighty American Civil War. I mean, everyone has the basic idea correct: the South took a tremendous thrashing. But having the loser’s POV take the forefront, even to the extent of exalting the K.K.K.-- this, more than Scarlett O’Hara’s ...more
Melissa ♥ Dog Lover ♥ Martin
6/29/16 UPDATE: I have since watched the movie and although I really liked the movie, it doesn't hold a candle to the book. But you can imagine that a book this size can't be put into one movie sitting. And where the book made me cry a lot, the movie didn't.

I spent over 12 hours today finishing this book. 1037 pages! 1. Because I wanted to know what was going to happen! 2. I have no sort of life so I can do this from time to time.



I can not believe it took me so long to read this book! I didn't t
...more
Hannah
I don't like reviewing overly popular, classic books because let's face it, what more can be said regarding a book that 8,720 Goodreads reviewers haven't already covered, from 1 star through 5 star opinions?

So I'll just say that I read this novel for the first time when I was only about 14 years old. And re-read it, and re-read it, and re-read it again several times until around age 18. And then I never picked it up again until age 48 (that's 30 years of reading silence for those of you mathamat
...more
Madeline
Jan 03, 2011 Madeline rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There's an episode of The Simpsons where Apu, the Indian owner of the Kwik-E-Mart, takes the American citizenship test. Apu, who throughout the episode has demonstrated a much stronger grasp of American history than any of the American-born characters, is at the oral exam stage of the test. His examiner, a bored white guy, is asking the questions, and the following exchange occurs:

"BORED WHITE GUY: Okay, last question - what was the cause of the Civil War?

APU: Actually, there were numerous caus
...more
Stephanie
5+++ Bright and Shining stars! Beautifully written, heart wrenching, epic!

What can I possibly say about Gone with the Wind that has not been said before? I can't over emphasize how much I truly enjoyed reading this book. This has been one of my favorite movies for years, and I am somewhat ashamed that it took me so long to read the book. Better late than never!!

The book is grittier than the movie and offers so much more in the way of color around the characters and the setting. In fact, certai
...more
Lina
Before I give my opinion about this classic novel let me make a few things clear. This book certainly has a lot of literary value. It is well written, the characters, are for the most part, interesting and Mitchell certainly breathed life into her characters. They feel like people and the plot, while it goes on for ages, it constructed well and by the end you feel like you have been satisfied in terms of a character arc.

Okay, now that that's done: I hate this book. I hate the characters (except
...more
Roya
Dec 04, 2016 Roya rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourite
As readers, we have the wonderful advantage of perspective. We can empathise with characters because we know how they think and feel and we're touched by it. My dad is a cinephile and despite never having read the book, has seen Gone with the Wind multiple times. Based on this, he views Scarlett as selfish and spoilt, when she's actually so much more than that. I enjoyed the film very much, but I wish adaptations wouldn't have to downplay characters so. Despite all of this, I love movie-Scarlett ...more
Aoibhínn
I've had a lot of trouble writing this review. I've been writing and re-writing this review over the last few months, and I just couldn't get it perfect. I've finally come to realise no review I can ever write will do this novel justice so I am just going to post it as it is.

Set in the state of Georgia, before, during and after the American Civil War, Gone With the Wind tells the story of Scarlett O'Hara, a vain, spoiled, over-privileged daughter of a plantation owner, from her days as a carefre
...more
Erin ☕ *Proud Book Hoarder*

“Perhaps - I want the old days back again and they'll never come back, and I am haunted by the memory of them and of the world falling about my ears. ”

The civil war. A beautiful woman at the height of selfishness. The love and death of home and land. Society wound up so tight an improper wink could undo you. Destruction, tragedy, political corruption, truth, lies, life, death, love, loss, big changes, new beginnings, intermingled with never ending cycles. All of this helps make Gone with the wi
...more
Lilly
Sep 01, 2014 Lilly rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Judy
Jan 19, 2016 Judy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
Having a hard time slogging through the blatant racism in this book. Times sure have changed. And thank God for that.

Okay, nearly forty years since I first read it, the epic love story set against the brutality of the Civil War still manages to sweep me up.

But the racism still wrankles, especially the glorification of the Ku Klux Klan--southern gentlemen had no other choice. They weren't bullies terrorizing people because of the color of their skin, they were protecting their women from the rap
...more
helen the bookowl
Feb 27, 2016 helen the bookowl rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't think I need to say much about this story because most of you will have already read the book or watched the movie. I will say though that this book fascinated me, mostly because of the main character Scarlett O'Hara. She is such a brat and 100% selfish; everything she does, she does to gain her goals; but I loved how she is portrayed (mostly) realistically. Everyone has these dark and twisted thoughts inside, Scarlett just isn't afraid to show it. I did feel, however, that her character ...more
Vanessa
Feb 28, 2016 Vanessa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book. This book. Honestly, I would go as far to say that it is a masterpiece, in its scope, its characterisation, its history, and its story. Never have I been so enthralled in such a long book, to the point where I was never bored and constantly wishing I was reading it when I wasn't able to (damn you work *shakes fist*). And never have I read a near-1000 page novel in such a short space of time!

For those of you who haven't seen the film, Gone With the Wind is a sweeping Civil War-era dra
...more
Cindy
Wherein I attempt to write a review using all the new words I learned whilst reading the book. My made-up-on-the-spot rule is one per sentence, to make it a challenge. (Glossary at end of review.)

---------------

I hope you won’t look upon my review as mere folderol, but the most interesting things to be said about Gone With the Wind have been said over and over: it’s breathtaking, sweeping, American, but also racist and exacerbating. Everyone needs to read the story of one of literature’s best tr
...more
Diana
Aug 01, 2008 Diana rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
One book I can honestly say that I enjoyed less than the movie. In Margaret Mitchell's book Scarlett has no redeeming qualities whatsoever. I spent the better part of the book wanting to slap her silly.
Kim

The first time - and until now the only time - I read this book was in December 1975. I had just finished high school and my best friend persuaded me to read her favourite novel. Every afternoon for about three weeks I went to the local beach for a couple of hours to sunbake and read. From that first experience of reading Gone with the Wind , the novel became associated in my mind with the feeling of sunshine on my skin, the smell of the ocean, the sound of waves breaking on the sand and the sen
...more
David
I kind of don't want to give this book 5 stars. I'm going to, because it was epic. Seriously, it's a really, really good read and Margaret Mitchell was a fantastic storyteller. She captures the feel of a lost generation and a bygone world and makes it real, pulsing with life and bittersweet memory and pride. Her characters are wonderfully vivid and complicated and conflicted, larger than life archetypes symbolizing the different elements of society each one represents. And the story is sweeping ...more
Thomas
I don't know where to start. It took me exactly two weeks to read this 1,024 page novel, and after all of the heartbreaking loss and squeal-worthy romance these characters have experienced, I can only say that there is a reason why this book is a classic. Even if you're not a fan of romance, drama, historical fiction, etc., you need to read this book. You really do.

Above is the tidy little summary of how I feel about Gone With the Wind. Now I'm going to go into further detail about why I loved t
...more
Zen Cho
Jul 03, 2011 Zen Cho rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Copied over from my blog:

I'd known this was racist in a vague sort of way, not remembering much about the book or movie except bosoms and swooning, but wow, I didn't know it was that mindblowingly racist. The people who wanted to cut the n-word from Huckleberry Finn should all get together and have let's-set-Gone-With-The-Wind-on-fire parties. Man, if they applied their efforts to Gone With The Wind they could probably cut the book short by about a hundred pages.

I should say I like Scarlett as a
...more
Laurie
Just finished my most recent rereading of GWTW and fell in love with this book once again. Margaret Mitchell never fails to weave her magic no matter how many times I've read it.
GWTW is not just a romantic story involving Scarlett, Ashley and Rhett but also a well researched account of the civil war.
Since the victors always write the history concerning any war it's fascinating to learn about the other side of the story.

Edward Lorn
Jan 19, 2017 Edward Lorn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: paperbacks
I've gone back and forth on whether or not I would review this. Is there anything else left to say about this book? I've scoured Goodreads, reading every low-star review I could find to get the other side of the story. I wanted to know how anyone could possibly dislike this book. There are some valid points: people who can't get past the racism, some who can't get past the phonetic dialogue, those who disliked every character because there isn't a likable character in the entire novel... well, t ...more
Nikoleta
Αγάπησα όλους τους χαρακτήρες, είναι από τους πιο καλοδουλεμένους χαρακτήρες που έχω διαβάσει σε βιβλίο. Και ναι, Scarlett- haters, μου αρέσει η Σκάρλετ. Είναι στριμμένη αλλά είναι πεισματάρα, δυναμική, ξέρει τι θέλει και τα βάζει κ με τον ίδιο τον Θεό για να προστατεύσει αυτούς που αγαπά και με τον διάβολο για να κρατήσει απλά έναν λόγο που έδωσε. Η αφήγηση είναι ωραία, το ίδιο και η πλοκή.
Έχω όμως μεγάλο πρόβλημα με την ίδια την οπτική του βιβλίου και με… την Mitchell. Και τι εννοώ με αυτό, η
...more
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
I can't believe I didn't read this book before now. It's an amazing book. I was swept up in the descriptions of the life in the time period. The characters became part of my family. I cried at the end like I had lost a family member. The movie has long been a favorite of mine but unbelievabley can't stand up to this amazing work of literature.
Beth
May 28, 2009 Beth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-read
In 6th grade Gone with the Wind was playing 2 nights on TBS. My mom was recording it and on the 1st night I thought 'what a waste' and refused to watch it. The 2nd night I got caught up in the story and walked the library the next day and checked the book out.

I couldn't even wait to get home to start reading! I sat down at the table and read the first sentence, over and over. "Scarlett O'Hara was not beautiful." Ok, it's not even the entire first sentence, but I couldn't get past that statement.
...more
Loederkoningin
I tossed and turned but couldn't sleep, having just finished Gone with the Wind somewhere after midnight. I tried Scarlett's famous line "I'll think of it tomorrow", but eventually got out of bed, pushed open a window to let the cool, crisp air in and stared out over the city in the distance. I had no idea that this book - which I reluctantly took with me in public because people would either brightly state that I was "reading a big book" or innocently ask if it was anything like Danielle Steel ...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Margaret Munnerlyn Mitchell, popularly known as Margaret Mitchell, was an American author, who won the Pulitzer Prize in 1937 for her novel, Gone with the Wind, published in 1936. The novel is one of the most popular books of all time, selling more than 28 million copies. A
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