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Wuthering Heights
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Federico Trejos (Goura) | 7 comments This dark romance has such a mythology! I just keeping coming back and such a love story, perfectly tragic, with lots of things in that fog and marshes, the savage and the tamed into coldness and frightening ghosts all over, the injustice of most human affairs. The narration, the beat, the sceneries both landscape and psychological, I mean they all go on in a cyclical way in some dimension, such worlds of fiction I think can haunt with their relation to any dark and deep scars of our feeling and fleeting past worlds moving and colliding..oh sorry for so many words, it's too much images and emotions, I think this novel is one of the deepest cuts I've had, and made me bury love in joy and freedom's sake...


Federico Trejos (Goura) | 7 comments YEAH I hope dearly in love for the love wretched in life, such a powerful read, I've just started it but have seen the movie and read parts and Kate Bush's song, so deep, makes me wonder if all of mortal's love is bound to be tragic except the lucky few, so many things in this four lettered word that makes somehow the world go round and is only true when selfless, but bitter at the end, be it what fortune's decree may...ps sorry for sounding so tragic, it's just life's school, I've given up, but I love to read and go deep on this emotion that makes so much motion....I guess I'm at some sort of solitary agape...I definitely need more substitutes emotionally, to keep these ghosts like Cathy's haunting my moors...


Saima Siddiqui (SensationalSaima) | 5 comments Wuthering Heights's truly a gem of a book. The intensity of love between Catherine and Heathcliff's simply amazing. It gives out the message that even terrible people are capable of love. :)


Alba | 23 comments yeah, I'll definitely put it on my to-read list, thanks for the advice!


Everyman | 221 comments Alba wrote: "The reason why I enjoyed it so much was the fact that from the beginning you can see how the characters are dooming themselves to a terrible ending and they don't even realize, it's tragic and so haunting to the reader watching from outside."

That's a nice observation. If you like that sort of approach to novel writing, try Thomas Hardy. Tess of the Durbervilles or Jude the Obscure in particular may well give you that same sense. Hardy was a strong believer that fate controlled our lives, and that as Shakespeare put it, only I think Hardy would have substituted fate for gods, "as flies to wanton boys are we to the gods; they kill us for their sport."


Alba | 23 comments I have to say this book dissapointed me at the begginning, probably because I was expecting a Jane Austen kind of love story, and came across this dark and mysterious novel. It was a refreshing change and I ended up apreciating it for what it is. The reason why I enjoyed it so much was the fact that from the begginning you can see how the characters are dooming themselves to a terrible ending and they don't even realize, it's tragic and so haunting to the reader watching from outside. At least that's my opinion, sorry for my english...


Josh | 3 comments In my opinion, this is a great book with fascinating characters and a great description of the English countryside. I wholeheartedly agree with James Joyce when he said that Emily Bronte has a great imagination. It is that imagination (not her experience in the world) and the genetic predisposition to great writing ability that enabled the author to create this excellent piece of literature.


Martha | 59 comments Denise, I was just afraid any movie would take away from the book, but it sounds like it won't. I'll be more open to a movie. Thank you.


Denise (Dulcinea3) | 134 comments Martha, I'm sorry my post discouraged you from seeing the Olivier/Oberon version, because I love that movie! It is a (black & white) classic. There are other versions, of course, that do cover the whole story. The only other one I have is the one with Timothy Dalton and Juliette Binoche. I haven't watched it in a long time, but I remember that I did like it, contrary to a lot of bad reviews (I think that a lot of people actually called it "Withering Tights", LOL!).


Martha | 59 comments Denise-- I just finished this book about 2 weeks ago and I agree with you, I loved it! I am glad you gave me insight regarding the movie because I have been tempted to watch it; but, if It doesn't cover more than one generation, never mind. Usually, I am not one who likes to see the movie after a book because of my own interpretation (I don't want to ruin the atmosphere I have created in my mind) but, it would be interesting to see how the house and landscape are depicted.


Denise (Dulcinea3) | 134 comments I don't believe that there was a sexual relationship between Catherine and Heathcliff. I also remember in a discussion I participated in that there was a lot of speculation about Heathcliff's possibly being Earnshaw's illegitimate son and that was why he brought him home, but I tend to think that is not true, either. It is possible, though, I suppose. It is certainly a mystery how Heathcliff got his money.


message 34: by Jennifer (last edited Oct 03, 2012 01:06AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jennifer  | 201 comments I appreciated this book and have been meaning to give it a re-read to see if I would end up loving this book as sometimes happens. I have not yet done that. However, I have never had the opportunity to discuss the book with anyone. What I found frustrating about the book is quite possibly what some people really like about the book. I felt that so much was left unsaid in the book and left for the reader to determine. For example, what was the extent of Catherine's relationship with Heathcliff? Was it sexual? I thought that the sexual nature of their relationship was implied, but some people don't seem to think so. What was Catherine's true relationship to Heathcliff? Her father brought him home mysteriously and seemed to take a greater liking to him than to his own son. I always thought that maybe Heathcliff was truly a half-brother to Catherine which would make their relationship kind of incestuous. Where did Heathcliff earn all of his money? I think that we can presume it was by doing something sinister given what we know of his character. I just wish that Bronte had left us with more clues to the answers to these questions.


message 33: by Kelsi (last edited Oct 02, 2012 09:36PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kelsi | 69 comments κίρστεν (Kirsten who loves Greek :) wrote: "Amanda wrote: "I am mad at myself for waiting until I was 27 to read it for the first time, I missed out on years of knowing these characters. I agree that they are rotten but their love redeems th..."

The second read is what did it for me. It also helped when one of my friends told me that the first quarter of the book is kind of hard to understand but once you get there, the book picks up. Now, I would consider it one of my favorite books of all time. How Bronte created such awful characters, yet still managed to tell a cohesive story is beyond me.


κίρστεν (Kirsten) (Kirsten_J) | 13 comments Amanda wrote: "I am mad at myself for waiting until I was 27 to read it for the first time, I missed out on years of knowing these characters. I agree that they are rotten but their love redeems them. A person ca..."

Amanda, I'm not sure I agree. As Rita said, I don't really feel like they loved each other. They had a mad obsession with each other. In Cathy's case, she refused to marry Heathcliff because in her own words she would 'degrade herself'. Certainly she wouldn't say that if she loved him. As for Heathcliff, he's possessive and jealous, and even says that Catherine 'deserved to die' for marrying someone other than him. No one has the right to claim such possession of another person. I can't really see any real love between them.

I didn't really enjoy this book overall, but from what the others are saying, I wonder if I missed something and I might understand it better on a second read.


Rita Haley | 4 comments I read a piece of a feminist interpretation of WH. It suggested that Heathcliff and Kathy can be viewed as two parts of one character. An interesting idea.
That aside, I don't see Heathcliff as loving Kathy. You don't torture the daughter of someone you truly love. To me, each wants what the other has: missing or buried parts of themselves.


Jana (janaS) | 1 comments I'm in love with that book. It is such a refreshing novel. I was blown by the synthesis of the bad weather and the anger.


message 29: by Kelly (last edited Aug 21, 2012 07:59AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kelly | 3 comments Rebecca wrote: "Wuthering Heights is one of my favorites. As far as gothic romance novels go, there is nothing better. Great books don't have to have likable characters for me, just fascinating ones. Not only are ..."

This is my favorite book. I could not agree with your comment more. I think that alot of people don't like this book because they don't like the characters in it. I also find that people have a love or hate relationship with this book. There is no in-between. Even though Heathcliff is evil and corrupt, he is my favorite character of all time. His character is very intriguing to me.


Denise (Dulcinea3) | 134 comments Phil wrote: "Denise wrote: "I've never considered it to be horror. I do think it has some strong Gothic elements, but the only element I can think of that might be related to horror is Cathy's ghost at the beg..."

Thanks for the reply, Phil! You do make a good point about non-supernatural horror, and I can see how you can apply the elements you mention to the genre. I think we will have to agree to disagree, though, because to me, I still see it as more of a Gothic romance than Gothic horror. For me, horror has to scare me, and this novel has never scared me, no matter how terrible Heathcliff is. I see it more as illustrative of the lengths someone will go to when under the influence of obsessive love.


message 27: by Phil (last edited Aug 11, 2012 04:54AM) (new)

Phil (Lanark) | 341 comments Denise wrote: "I've never considered it to be horror. I do think it has some strong Gothic elements, but the only element I can think of that might be related to horror is Cathy's ghost at the beginning, and tha..."

Denise - horror doesn't have to be about the supernatural ... think of Stephen King's "Misery" for example. I would say that the unrelenting gothic atmosphere of the yorkshire moors, the stiflingly oppressive atmosphere of obsessive illogical passion, the cruel unpredictable violence of the main characters, the lack of any escape routes from either the relationships or the locale, and the constant psychological brutality makes it far more horrifying than most so-called "horror" novels I've read. Yes, I'd stand by my statement that it's a gothic horror novel. The only point of hope is that the next generation might be able to disperse the miasma that would so likely have asphyxiated them as it did the others.


Tia Beach | 8 comments Anubhav and Aviva, exactly! You have completely taken all of my feelings about this book and described then much better then I could have. I just think too many people dive into this book expecting a classic romance and lovely characters. Then they are disappointed when that's not at all what they get..


Aparajita | 8 comments I first read this book when I was 12. Agree that the characters are not very likeable, but I found the book very compelling, very different from anything I had read before.
There are certain elements which totally caught me- there's real drama which will appeal to a teenager and some stuff which I did find terrifying.
Heathcliff's inhuman brutality- had he received some sort of different home atmosphere, would he have grown up different? What did he do to make his fortune? His lover for Catherine- something very destructive in itself. His marriage.
The almost complete isolation of the two houses. There seems to be no other social contact, no friends, nobody to save people from the clutches of Heathcliff. Young Cathy's fate.
The really gruesome weather through most of the book- that is kind of there in some Gothic novels.
The entirely destructive emotion of the two protagonists- not sure that I would call it love.

and the final redemption and the ray of hope at the end in the shape of the two young lovers


Denise (Dulcinea3) | 134 comments I've never considered it to be horror. I do think it has some strong Gothic elements, but the only element I can think of that might be related to horror is Cathy's ghost at the beginning, and that is such a short bit of the whole story. It may even have been just a nightmare. What horror elements do you see in it, Phil?


Aviva | 2 comments True. I love how much the reader is able to glean from this book.


message 22: by Phil (last edited Aug 10, 2012 01:45PM) (new)

Phil (Lanark) | 341 comments At heart, Wuthering Heights is a gothic horror novel and not a romance. But probably the greatest gothic horror novel written.


message 21: by Aviva (last edited Aug 10, 2012 11:00AM) (new)

Aviva | 2 comments Anubhav, I love your comment "my reaction kept changing as the pages turned." That is exactly what makes Wuthering Heights a great novel. It's so true the Wuthering Heights has been misrepresented, as Phil states. I think this mostly due to the movie versions, most of which only tell half the story and also make it into a romantic love story. Wuthering Heights, in my mind, describes the darker side of love. The pain of rejection and betrayal that can make people act insane (think of how nasty divorce turns sometimes). It shows what people in love can do to each other and themselves when they get hurt. Heathcliff is a brute, but he is not that simple a character. We can also sympathize with him. He is abandoned and abused as a child. The love he shows for his adopted father is tender and sweet. Cathy is selfish and vain, but Emily shows us how she suffers as a result of being a woman in the 19th century. She marries Linton against her better judgment and lives to regret it. She thinks of money (since she can't work as a woman) and hopes to support Heathcliff via her marriage. These are powerful characters. The novel is a love story (but not in the traditional romantic sense that we are used to reading). I imagine that Emily learned a thing or two by experiencing Branwell's ranting and pain after his rejection by Mrs. Robinson. Wuthering Heights is also about revenge and the darker side of human nature. It is so raw and honest in its portrayal of humanity that readers are shocked and repelled--who wants to believe humans are capable of such behavior? But they are (much worse, even). It definitely takes more than one reading to appreciate this masterpiece.


Anubhav Srivastava | 6 comments After much ado, i finished with this book and to be honest, my reaction kept changing as the pages turned. At first I found it to be quite okay, nothing spectacular. Then as the characters grew, the brute Heathcliff and the vain Cathy, I began loving it. I second all those who critique the characters as morbid and delusional, but this is where lies the beauty of the work. To create a Magnum opus from an array of such protagonists is definitely commendable.


Dolores (Dizzydee39) | 349 comments Mod
I haven't read this since high school and all this discussion makes me want to read it again soon!


Tara Phil, I completely agree with you. I picked up the book thinking I was going to be reading a story of doomed love, or however you want to describe Wuthering Heights in today's culture. What I read was not a love story - it was a story about two selfish people who rolled over anyone in their way, often for sport. For me, it's more a story of overcoming the choices of your parents and taking control of your own life. I'm so glad to know I'm not alone in my view of this excellent, though misrepresented, book. Phil wrote: "Wuthering Heights is, for me, the book that's most misrepresented in the public psyche (well, those who haven't actually read it, anyway). Doomed lovers meeting on the moors, romantic, love-lorn et..."


Kelly I read this book last year and loved it. Yes the characters are unlikeable but there is also a more profound passion, and as Rebecca said, they are fascinating characters, and there is a real story behind it. It is tragic and draws you in and the characters are more human in all their imperfections. Its dark but emotionally masterful. Wild was a good word. And Amanda's comment above - their love redeems them.

I also like the strange perspectives from which it is told and the duality between the present characters and Catherine and Heathcliff. Its also very very clever.


Bhawya | 12 comments first time i absolutely hated this book...it took me several readings to appreciate its beauty...i think in the end the thing that struck with me was the fact that nothing could seperate them nor his bruteness neither her marriage...kathy and heathcliff were togeather no matter what....eternal love story..


Laura De Leon | 2 comments When I started reading this book I expected this love story between the doomed Kathy and Heathcliff but what I found was completly different. I was mostly taken back by what I read because the two main charaters were so different from any love story that I've ever read with their rudeness and tha way the show they care for each other. Mostly this is what made me like the book even if I'm not very fond of it.


Katie (katiegresham) | 2 comments The most apt simile for reading this book Rick. Yes she's great at describing moors and these unlikable characters, but the violence seemed to have no meaning, no moral. I prefer Jane Eyre, at least you can tell people at the time like it for Jane's moral character. I have no idea why anyone would like Wuthering Heights at the time it was written.

Rick wrote: "I can't say that I liked the book, for the reasons that Phil mentions. It is definitely well written, but, after finishing the story, I can only describe it using the following simile:

It was like..."



Rebecca Smith (Bianka42) | 1 comments Wuthering Heights is one of my favorites. As far as gothic romance novels go, there is nothing better. Great books don't have to have likable characters for me, just fascinating ones. Not only are Heathcliff and Catherine borderline evil, most of the other characters aren't compelling either; usually ending up to be weak or dull creatures of duty. I think it's wildly, almost foolishly, romantic and says something about human character: love, hate, strength, and weakness. Goodness does not always achieve love and certainly evil is not always deprived of passion.


Caryn (banditpawz) | 5 comments I really enjoyed this book (on the whole); although, I agree that the characters are pretty awful...I don't think I liked any of them all that much. But I also felt bad for them.

I saw the Masterpiece Classic version of the book, and thought it was ok. That version really played up the love story without showing how bad Catherine and Heathcliff were.


Nette I actually really like this story even though it was so depressing and I seriously didn't like Heathcliffe by the end -- but I like the story anyway because it's so romantic (ly tragic) hehe just kidding. It was just sad.


Denise (Dulcinea3) | 134 comments This is my favorite novel. I first read it when I was in junior high - I saw the movie (Laurence Olivier/Merle Oberon), and the very next day I went to the bookstore and bought it. I was thrilled to find that the movie only covered the first generation, and there was much more story to discover and enjoy!


Amanda | 3 comments I am mad at myself for waiting until I was 27 to read it for the first time, I missed out on years of knowing these characters. I agree that they are rotten but their love redeems them. A person can't be all bad if they can love like that. I imagine they would have ended up very different people if they had been able to follow their hearts.


Shannon Gonzales | 11 comments For me this book amazed me exceedingly. All the dips and turns. What I love is how Emily was able to baffle, amaze, and evoke so many more emotions from myself--as if she was a puppet master. The contents of Wuthering Heihts can't seem to leave me and in idle hours the memory and emotions of it visit and imprint into my mind. Yet I can't seem to find words if I were told to explain why--plot wise--this book is so great. But how I believe it so! I'm baffled.


Phil (Lanark) | 341 comments Having said that, I feel the same about Emma Bovary - my thought at the end of Madame Bovary was "serves you right".


Catharine | 23 comments I agree with Phil on this one. I have no patience for people who act like children. Actually, I think that the children in the novel acted better than Catherine and Heathcliffe did. It's quite pathetic, actually. I remember the entire time that I was reading the novel wanting to smack all of them back into their senses.


message 5: by Rick (last edited Jul 15, 2012 05:10PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Rick (parepidemos) | 59 comments I can't say that I liked the book, for the reasons that Phil mentions. It is definitely well written, but, after finishing the story, I can only describe it using the following simile:

It was like witnessing the wreck of a passenger train first hand, and, being caught up in the human tragedy and loss of life and limb, you can't help but continue watching, in morbid fascination at the horror of it all.


Bevin (BevinK) | 26 comments In all honesty, I've never been able to finish this book. As you said Phil, these are horrid people who I loathe by the time I give up on the novel. I am going to attempt it again, but am putting it off.

Personally, for doomed lovers meeting on the moors, I much prefer Charlotte's 'Jane Eyre.'


message 3: by Phil (last edited Jul 15, 2012 10:20AM) (new)

Phil (Lanark) | 341 comments Wuthering Heights is, for me, the book that's most misrepresented in the public psyche (well, those who haven't actually read it, anyway). Doomed lovers meeting on the moors, romantic, love-lorn etc etc etc. When the truth is that Kathy and Heathcliffe are possibly two of the most unlikeable characters in the whole of english literature and the fact that Emily Bronte managed to craft such a wonderful book from them is evidence of her genius.

Heathcliffe is a controlling, brutal psychopath and Kathy is a selfish, fickle beast. The two deserve each other, it's just a shame others get hurt around them.


Hester | 2 comments It took me ages to finish this book. But I absolutely love it. I love the fact that the main character(s) is/are so full of faults and it makes her/them so human.
I can't wait to reread this book, it's definitely one of my favorites. :)


Tia Beach | 8 comments I absolutely love this book. The character dynamics and the description of the moors! Oh, it never gets old.


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