Edan's Reviews > Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Tess of the D'Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
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Dec 14, 07

Read in November, 2007

From my Year in Reading 2007 post on www.themillionsblog.com:

Tess of the D'Urbervilles should not be read in high school. From my unscientific poll, I've learned that anyone who tried this book as a teenager found it unbearably boring. Thankfully, I read this novel as an adult (or, okay, as a twenty-six year old), and loved the story of Tess, a "pure woman" as the original subtitle asserts. It was not only deliciously tragic, it was also readable - I devoured this in less than a week, and mourned its end for twice that long. The narrator's unrelenting compassion for Tess, his assertion that she is pure and moral, despite her society's view of her as a "fallen woman," felt quite bold, and the descriptions of nature, "...the seasons in their moods, mornings and evenings, night and noon, winds in their different tempers, waters and mists, shades and silences, and the voices of inanimate things," made me want to go milk some cows in the English countryside.
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Comments (showing 1-7 of 7) (7 new)

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Kimley Oh, I just love this book!!!! I read it about 4-5 years ago and I think it may be the best book I've read in the last 10 years. Can't wait to hear what you both think of it.

Edan About 50 pages in, and I'm enjoying it so far. I'll report back!

Edan Well, Robert, we'll have to book club it when we're finished. I never pile books up, because I hate feeling obligated to read something. It's a great system, but it means showing restraint and only purchasing one book at a time (which is easier when you live around the corner from a bookstore!)

message 4: by Marion (new)

Marion People, my people. Please return message to base on this one. I'm eager to hear what you all think.

Edan Have you read it, Marion?

message 6: by Marion (new)

Marion Yes, and like Kimley, I love this book. It's so beautiful and sordid. The lines I underlined would make my manifesto, or at least that of me, age 21. Of course, I was forced to read it for a class, which means I didn't read it, then I picked it back up when living in Chile-- such a contrast from the English moors, that I was enthralled from the get go. Oh, what makings and breakings of the heart.

Edan I am now about a 100 pages in--I spent a long time reading this today, and loving it. My computer's broken (using Patrick's now), and I'm not teaching, and writing by hand can only take up so much of my time. I am underlining so much, Marion!
Like this:
"...he made close associations with phenomena which he had before known but darkly--the seasons in their moods, morning and evening, night and noon, winds in their different tempers, trees, waters and mists, shades and silences, and the voices of inanimate things."

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