Kirk's Reviews > Far from the Madding Crowd

Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy
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Apr 25, 08

Read in April, 2008

"Far from the Madding Crowd" is a pastoral novel; the nature symbolism is applied with a liberal brush, and it's definitely reactionary to the Industrial Revolution in England. Nature = good, urban = bad.

It's a really good book. It's an unconventional love story between a strong-willed woman who values her independence (a daring characterization for the time period) and a solid, honest shepherd. The cast of characters are very well developed, and the story is never as predictable as you think it's going to be.

It took me forever to read this novel. It's nearly 400 pages, but it felt like even longer. It didn't drag, but it is a little dense. My usual habit of reading on my lunch break just didn't cut it; I got through most of it on a plane, and then finally finished it by taking off work early a couple hours and hiding out in a coffeehouse 'til I was done.

It's easy to read, it's interesting as a period piece, and it's satisfying throughout. I recommend it wholeheartedly.

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Gary the SophistiCat Very astute observations about a great book which I too found hard to read until I was near the end.


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