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Ross Poldark (The Poldark Saga #1)

4.1  ·  Rating details ·  13,988 Ratings  ·  1,624 Reviews
Tired from a grim war in America, Ross Poldark returns to his land and his family. But the joyful homecoming he has looked forward to turns sour, for his father is dead, his estate is derelict, and the girl he loves is engaged to his cousin.
Paperback, 455 pages
Published February 1st 1996 by Pan Books (first published 1945)
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Thayer Berlyn The best editions are published out of the UK. The first two books, "Ross Poldark" and "Demelza" are missing a percentage of text in the U.S.…moreThe best editions are published out of the UK. The first two books, "Ross Poldark" and "Demelza" are missing a percentage of text in the U.S. publications...something like 14% or 17%. I can't remember exactly. I was fortunate in that my Grandfather had the first three books, which are Ward & Lock 1st edition hardcovers (1945-50) published in the UK, and which I inherited many years ago among the other books in his library. I ordered all of the remaining titles out of the UK in hardcover.

If you are interested in hardcover editions, specifically, has an outstanding collection of books, from the rare to the easily available, Graham novels notwithstanding. Ebay is also an option if you want to find UK editions, paperback or hardcover, that you can buy without bidding. It's all a matter of cost comparison. There is nothing wrong with editions printed in the U.S., but I would at least purchase the first two out of the UK.(less)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Cindy Book: Chap 28, After they take a moonlight boat ride to watch fishermen netting the pilchards.

2015 tv series: When Delmelza sings at the Christmas…more
Book: Chap 28, After they take a moonlight boat ride to watch fishermen netting the pilchards.

2015 tv series: When Delmelza sings at the Christmas party at Trenwith (per Debbie Horsfield, screenwriter for the series)(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Melissa ♥ Dog Lover ♥ Martin
Some of my friends in two different groups I'm in started reading this series so I thought, let me watch a little bit of the show on Amazon Prime. Um, yeah, then I decided I needed all of the books even though there is something going to happen that I didn't like but let the pictures do the talking =)


Okay, so we have the beautiful Ross Poldark going off off to war thinking he would be coming home to his wonderful Elizabeth that he had fell in
4.5 stars rounded up

"A wet October evening is depressing, but it drapes some soft shadows on the rough edges of ruin and decay. Not so the light of morning."

Captain Ross Poldark is eager to return to his land and his love after fighting for the British in the Revolutionary War. He is jolted into reality when he finds that with the death of his father, his property has been neglected and ruined, and that his beloved is now engaged to his cousin. It will require much hard work and determination if
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
3.5 stars. Ross Poldark, published in 1945, tells the story of Ross, a British man in his twenties, from the time he returns from the war in America in 1783 until about four years later. It's the first of a series of a dozen Poldark books that has spawned a couple of BBC miniseries, one in 1975 and a remake in 2015:


Ross is landed gentry, but not particularly wealthy. In fact, he's skirting the edge of poverty, and his father had let their home and land fall to pieces in his later years, especial
Tracie Banister
Jun 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I've been hearing a lot about the new Poldark TV-series that's being filmed for the BBC and thought the multi-generational saga sounded like something I'd enjoy, so I decided to give the first book a read. I'm so glad I did! I was instantly drawn into the story of Ross Poldark, the young officer who returns to Cornwall after fighting in the Revolutionary War, sporting a scar on his face and a limp, to find that his father is dead, his family home is in ruins, and his love, the beautiful and gent ...more
Sep 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"But in the depths of horror and despair one comes to a new steadiness. There is no farther to fall."

And I've fallen into the depths of this historical fiction series by Winston Graham. PBS has taken it to new heights in their offering which will debut Season 2 later in September.

Ross Poldark is a returning British soldier having served in America during the uprise of the Revolutionary War. March of 1783 brings news of his father's death. Setting foot upon this once beloved estate, Ross is conf
Sep 19, 2007 rated it it was amazing
These books are totally under-rated. Although they may be slightly trashy Pre-Victorian love stories, so was Jane Eyre when it was written. Graham is a very good writer and these books are full of powerful and descriptive pros which ignite the imagination - even if said imagination is that of a hopeless romantic who watches too much Masterpiece Theater and too many Lifetime movies. As the title suggests, it is a saga - melodramatic like 'Gone with the Wind,' but like 'Gone with the Wind' it is g ...more
4.5 rounded up.

I couldn’t resist this has a picture of Aidan Turner on its cover. Seriously, I have loved watching the Poldark series on PBS and I find the book it is based on to be just as interesting and fulfilling. I will be reading the entire book series, although at what pace I am not sure.

Book 1 deals with Ross Poldark, who comes home to England (Cornwall, no less) from the American Revolution to find that his father has died, his land is in complete disrepair, and his love is ab
Jul 11, 2015 marked it as no
fuck this book.


fuck this show

fuck the day this story shat on my life

i don't care how hot this character is

or wossiname from being human

who always kinda looked like a concussed goat to me anyway

all i know is

this one time this fictional person was more important than

anything i am or could ever be or

could ever have lost


this shit

right here

can die in a dumpster fire

surrounded by solemn hobos

and like four confused hipsters who think they're at bonnaroo

the end
Tim Vicary
Oct 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This site is called Goodreads and this book, together with the eleven other Poldark novels which follow it, is one of the best reads you could possibly find. Winston Graham is not just a good writer - he is in in my view a great writer. He has all the gifts and skills you could possibly want in a novelist: he creates wonderful, well-drawn characters, he has a brilliant, accurate ear for dialogue, he writes beautiful, concise description, he creates dramatic, page-turning plots - what more could ...more
Rating 3.5 stars

The BBC recently aired their new version of Poldark, and whilst I and a nation of women went gaga for the brooding and shirtless Aidan Turner (oh dear God *drool*), I also adored the beautiful Eleanor Tomlinson and the sizzling chemistry they had together. When Ross and Demelza fell first in passion (the dress scene *swoon*) and then in love (the singing scene *sigh*), so did I with them. Just gorgeous.

Away from the TV show, the first book in the series, Ross Poldark, took a whi
Jul 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
I have a shameful confession. Other than a few notable exceptions (Tolstoy, Anthony Trollope, Jasper Fforde) I rarely enjoy fiction written by men. I can’t even discuss it without resorting to stereotypes I would resent if it was women being lumped together, but if I was forced to say something it would be that even when I’m intrigued by the stories male authors have to tell, their characterizations, particularly of women, tend to make my skin crawl.

So while I’ve been eagerly awaiting each TV ep
KERMIT FLAIL: re-visit 2015 via new BBC series

Episode 1 of 8: Cornwall, 1783. Ross Poldark returns from the battlefield to find his father dead, the estate in ruins and his sweetheart Elizabeth engaged to his cousin. On impulse, Ross rescues young urchin Demelza and resolves to forge a new life in the face of hostile forces.

Episode 2 of 8:Ross resolves to reopen his family mine with Francis. Demelza struggles to fit in at Nampara, and Verity makes an unsuitable match.

Episode 3/8: Ross celebrates
Jun 23, 2007 rated it really liked it
I used to think I hated historical fiction; I've since realized that what I hate is bad historical fiction. In a lot of the historical fiction books I've read, it seemed as if the author hated to waste the hours spent researching the period and instead, chose to incorporate what they'd read in lengthy text-book style asides about contextual events which really detracted from the novel itself. However, since forming that impression I've read some excellent historical fiction (e.g., "Year of Wonde ...more
Jan 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
5 second time around stars!!! Loved the re-read even more than the first.

The sun had gone down, and the brows of the sky were dark.

And Ross again knew himself to be happy- in a new and less ephemeral way than before.

He thought, If we could only stop life for a while I would stop here. Not when I get home, not leaving Trenwith, but here, here reaching the top of the hill out of Sawle, dusk wiping out the edges of the land and Demelza walking and humming at my side.

This has been such a fabulous a
Jan 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

At first glance, it is easy to see why some modern readers might overlook Ross Poldark, the primogenial novel in Winston Graham’s The Novels of Cornwall family saga. Originally published in 1945, most seventy-year-old books are now long forgotten. Its main character is a man—when to appeal to its primary audience most historical fiction is carried by a female protagonist. The setting can be off putting too. It begins in 1783, a difficult and depressing time in English history after the loss of t ...more
Kris - My Novelesque Life
I am a big fan of British mysteries, comedies and dramas so it is no surprise that I am a fan of Masterpiece Theater. I recorded Poldark when it appeared on PBS and enjoyed the series, but did find it a bit on the slow side. I heard that there was also another "mini-series" done in the 1970s. I knew that both were based on a book so I looked it up and saw that the first book was published in 1945 (post-world war II) and the last book was published in 2002. I was really curious in reading Ross Po ...more
Feb 20, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
Ross Poldark is historical drama/romance that reads as realistic historical fiction not as romantic chic-lit. It has very realistic feel to it, mainly because all characters are flawed, multi-dimensional and brilliantly written. I really liked that. I will take grey character over one-dimensional one any day.

I love historical family sagas and Poss Poldark is a promising start to Poldark series. I definitely plan t read next books very soon!
Enchantress  debbicat ☮
Buddy read with some friends in The Reading for Pleasure Book Club.
I had not seen the series on Masterpiece - but, I had friends who liked it.
I joined the buddy read late. Everyone was already on to the second book. After I read some of the discussion I decided this might be something I would like, tho, it is not my typical read.
All of that said, I am hooked and in for the remainder of the series. I just loved this. The characters are so well fleshed out. You really get to know them. My favor
Kimberly Carrington-Fox
Una agradable sorpresa, especialmente por el modo de narrar la historia, muy ágil y sin entretenerse en dar excesivos detalles.
Me ha encantado Ross, es el tipo de hombre que levanta una ceja y me sube las enaguas hasta las orejas.
Muy recomendable si quieres unas enaguas no guarrers pero con un protagonista digno de ellas.
Aug 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Again... just as wonderful. On to Demelza.
Inés Izal
Jun 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Maddie (Heart Full Of Books)
This was SO. GOOD. I'm 100% in love with the TV show, and I was surprised at how much this felt like watching the first half, when everything is good and Ross is first falling in love with Demelza.

Ross and Demelza are such an OTP, I can't wait to read (and watch) more!
At 122 pages I'm bailing. It may be that I'm just not in the mood. I did enjoy the humor at the beginning but after a while the story kind of dragged. I was hoping to feel a bit more invested in the characters as well but it never really happened for me. oh well. Cant win them all. But looking at all the 5 star reviews I think there might be something wrong with

The shame is that I own the first three books in the series (with the nice covers) and now don't know if I'll ever read them...
Jun 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ross Poldark, how do I love thee, let me count the ways.

I had become enamored with the BBC series of Poldark. It is what spurred my desire to read the books that the series has been based upon. I have not been in the least disappointed with this the first book in the series written by Winston Graham.

In this novel, we encounter Ross Poldark newly returned from the war in the American colonies to find the love of his life, Elizabeth, engaged to his cousin, Frances, his father dead, and his estate
Remember that episode of Seinfeld?

WINSTON G: See, this should be a book. This is the book.
JEAN G: What?
WINSTON G: This. Just talking.
JEAN G: (dismissing) Yeah, right.
WINSTON G: I'm really serious. I think that's a good idea.
JEAN G: Just talking? Well what's the book about?
WINSTON G: It's about nothing.
JEAN G: No story?
WINSTON G: No forget the story.
JEAN G: You've got to have a story.
WINSTON G: Who says you gotta have a story? Remember when we were waiting for, for the pilchards that time?
Pilar Senac
Nov 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Imagino que mi objetividad está bastante sesgada porque soy una megan fan de la serie. Me ha costado hacerme un poco con la descripción de los personajes por eso mismo, en algunos casos no coincidían las características físicas del libro con las de la BBC. Sin embargo, nadie puede negar que es una muy buena obra que refleja muy bien las formas y normas de una sociedad muy cuadriculada en un momento determinado de la historia, y la historia de amor creo que va a dar mucho de sí, ambos protagonist ...more
By now all of my faithful followers should know about the hit TV series based on this series of novels. In case you live under a rock (might I politely suggest you crawl out from under the rock and get on Amazon or get a copy of the DVD and watch the series?), this story is a saga about a family of Cornish gentry, the Poldarks. Returning home after fighting the rebels in America, Captain Ross Poldark discovers his home in ruins, his family mine shut and his people in need of help. He also learns ...more
 Lisa A. ⚡
What can be said about this amazing historical fiction/romance gem that hasn't already been said? At the time of this posting, the first book in the Poldark saga has a 4.11 average rating. In my opinion that rating is well deserved.

Although Ross Poldark is definitely swoon-worthy, the growth of Demelza's character and her underlying depth of kindness is what ultimately drew me into the story. There are enough additional characters to keep things interesting but not so many that is overwhelming
Apr 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical
This review was first published on Babblings of a Bookworm: http://babblingsofabookworm.blogspot....

I live in the UK, where the mini-series of Poldark was screened earlier this year. I recorded it, but I still haven't watched it, even now. I wanted to read the books first, so I can imagine things without being too influenced by somebody else's interpretation. I was so pleased to be given the opportunity to take part in this blog tour so I could read the first two books in the Poldark saga, which
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Retro Chapter Chi...: Ross Poldark (Book 1) Winston Graham 95 37 Aug 21, 2017 09:47AM  
Ross and Elizabeth - could they have been happy? 36 1969 May 30, 2017 05:16PM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: Reviews 6 42 Feb 18, 2017 03:11PM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: Place Names 22 43 Feb 07, 2017 04:12AM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: Legal marriage in the late 18th century (England) 6 54 Feb 02, 2017 05:51PM  
Poldark Saga - Wi...: Between the blue dress and the un-dress 24 138 Feb 01, 2017 12:42PM  
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Winston Graham was the author of forty novels. His books have been widely translated and the Poldark series has been developed into two television series, shown in 22 countries. Six of Winston Graham's books have been filmed for the big screen, the most notable being Marnie, directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Winston Graham was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and in 1983 was awarded the O.B ...more
More about Winston Graham...

Other Books in the Series

The Poldark Saga (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Demelza (Poldark, #2)
  • Jeremy Poldark (Poldark, #3)
  • Warleggan (Poldark, #4)
  • The Black Moon (Poldark, #5)
  • The Four Swans (Poldark, #6)
  • The Angry Tide (Poldark, #7)
  • The Stranger from the Sea (Poldark, #8)
  • The Miller's Dance (Poldark, #9)
  • The Loving Cup (Poldark, #10)
  • The Twisted Sword (Poldark, #11)

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“The greatest thing is to have someone who loves you and—and to love in return.” 42 likes
“Autumn lingered on as if fond of its own perfection.” 35 likes
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