Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Howards End” as Want to Read:
Howards End
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Read Book* *Different edition

Howards End

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  68,407 ratings  ·  2,578 reviews
Margaret Schlegel, engaged to the much older, widowed Henry Wilcox, meets her intended the morning after accepting his proposal and realizes that he is a man who has lived without introspection or true self-knowledge. As she contemplates the state of Wilcox's soul, her remedy for what ails him has become one of the most oft-quoted passages in literature:
Only connect! That
...more
Hardcover, Large Print, 565 pages
Published April 1st 1993 by Thorndike Press (first published 1910)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Howards End, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Aitziber
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Yesenia It is a beautiful book, beautifully written! And it makes you think about life, love, wealth, social inequality, family, art, relations, intimacy,…moreIt is a beautiful book, beautifully written! And it makes you think about life, love, wealth, social inequality, family, art, relations, intimacy, connection!, without feeling heavy or pedagogical. And it makes you love the two heroines so much, that after you finish, you want to know more about what happened to them... The story might not be the most interesting thing--it is not meant to be, it is not a detective or adventure or suspense crime novel. If you read a book for original storylines, this might not be what you want. If you read a book to get lost in the lives of other people and away from your own, this is definitely what you want!(less)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.96  · 
Rating details
 ·  68,407 ratings  ·  2,578 reviews


Filter
 | 
Sort order
Suzanne
Aug 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My review is not a review of Howard's End as much as it is a review of the negative reviews.

Most of the criticism seems to be that the readers felt that this book had nothing to do with them. They weren't familiar with the places in England referenced in the book. It was too English. It wasn't universal. True on some counts. This book isn't about you. It isn't about now. It isn't directly relevant to today. It won't feed the soul of the egomaniac.

It is, however, a beautifully written book with a
...more
Jeffrey Keeten
***New mini-series begins showing on Starz in the U.S. April 2018.***

”Discussion keeps a house alive. It cannot stand by bricks and mortar alone.”

 photo Howards20End_zpssqdrkkh0.jpg

I’ve fallen in love with the Schlegel sisters twice now in separate decades. I plan to keep falling in love with them for many decades to come. They are vibrant defenders of knowledge, of books, of art, of travel, of feeling life in the heart, lungs, kidneys, liver, and spleen on a daily basis. Margaret and Helen have a brother, Tibby, poor lad, who i
...more
Diane
I loved this book so much that I will never be able to do it justice in this review. I finished it several months ago, but still I think of it often and have recommended it to numerous friends. While reading, I used countless post-its to mark beautiful and thoughtful passages.

Howard's End was one of the novels I took on my visit to England earlier this summer. I wanted to read English authors while I was there, and I'm so glad I did. The specialized reading completely enhanced the trip, and it w
...more
Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
Nov 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Austen fans
Forster is the Jane Austen of the 20th century. He clearly read her novels and fell in love.

And this makes him rather unusual amongst his literary peers. He didn’t do anything new; he didn’t write with any particular passion or any attempt at breaking a literary boundary. His writing is relatively safe compared to the likes of Joyce or Woolf.

But in such safety a certain simple beauty can be found because Howard’s End is a novel about reconciliation; it’s about conflict and resolution; it’s ab
...more
Candi
Feb 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars

"A place, as well as a person, may catch the glow. Don't you see that all this leads to comfort in the end? It is part of the battle against sameness. Differences--eternal differences, planted by God in a single family, so that there may always be colour; sorrow perhaps, but colour in the daily grey."

Howards End is the second book in my endeavor to re-read all of E.M. Forster’s major novels. Having read five of these in my late teens, I decided that it would be fun to approach them with
...more
Jason Koivu
Feb 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I've read three of Forster's most well known novels, and yet, I don't feel I know them at all. Even this one, as I read it, was fading from memory. I don't mean to say that his work is forgettable, but with every Forster book I've read - amazing human portraits and elegant, occasionally profound turns of phrase - somehow they all flitter on out of my head. It's as if they were witty clouds: intelligent and incorporeal. Heck, I've even seen movie versions for a couple of them and I still don't re ...more
Jaidee
Jan 22, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Forster completists but would recommend the Merchant Ivory film more than the book
Recommended to Jaidee by: my teenage self
2.5 "This Champagne has gone flat and don't tell me that Vanilla is from Madagascar" stars !!

In my late teens I read all of Mr. Forster's books and although not my favorites I enjoyed them thoroughly. I wanted to re-read one at random and see what my forty-something self thought and felt. Alas, this particular reading of Howard's End did not hold up for me the way I had expected it too.

I want to to be clear though that I found parts of it sparkling but the majority of it was simply ho-hum and
...more
Michael
This novel from 1910 has a lovely Shakespearean flavor of good intentions leading to unintended consequences. Urgent letters between sisters kicks off its engaging plot about the collision between two very different families. The younger sister Helen Schlegel, visiting the rural “Howard’s End” estate of the conservative, wealthy Wilcox family, writes to Margaret that she is love with and wants to marry one of their sons Paul (which grew out of a single impulsive kiss). Margaret urges her aunt to ...more
Magrat Ajostiernos
Forster ya me impresionó, maravilló y dejó loca con 'Una habitación con vistas' y ahora viene y me hace ESTO.
Este libro me ha parecido una auténtica genialidad de principio a fin, por cómo está narrado con sutileza e ironía pero claridad meridiana, por ese análisis de la aristocracia inglesa, de la vida de las mujeres de principios del siglo XX, de los convencionalismos, la familia, el amor, la amistad, de esa radiografía de lo que realmente es Inglaterra... Pero especialmente este libro son sus
...more
Diane Barnes
Mar 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: re-reads, favorites
No good deed goes unpunished. That could be the unofficial theme of this novel.
I read this as a young adult, loved it, and decided to re-read it after seeing Jeffrey Keeten's excellent review a few months ago. And yes, I still love it, but for different reasons this time around. A much simplified plot synopsis gives us Meg Schlegel, a practical but plain lady of the middle class in England, who, with her sister and brother, live a comfortable life in London, espousing liberal causes and followi
...more
Karina
Oct 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The beginning started off slow but not boring. It was just trying to get into the plot but once it got into it was nice and flowing. Forster for being hardly into his 30s writing this amazing eye opening story is just incredible. His major understandings of society at that age are things people barely start to grasp in their 50s....

Howards End is the beginning of the story and the end to it. The house is more like a metaphor of all rich and poor dying but structures will always be standing and m
...more
Cecily
Jun 14, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
"Only connect" is doubtless the most famous line from this book, and typical of Forster's knack for sprinkling unexpectedly modern-sounding phrases into his prose.

PLOT
This is the story of the Schlegel sisters: half German Edwardians living in London. They are intellectual and comfortably off, but more bohemian/Bloomsbury than establishment. They encounter the wealthier and more conservative Wilcoxes and the struggling clerk Leonard Bast. Their altruistic attempts at social engineering are someti
...more
Aubrey
Reading this at the time I did is an event I can only describe as 'lucky', seeing as how both my reasoning and the circumstances hardly heralded how much I would love this work. The facts: Carson's The Beauty of the Husband: A Fictional Essay in 29 Tangos left me with a craving for something white and male and English, a rare beast these days that has made this the seventh work out of 45 read this year that fits that all too often ubiquitous combination of characteristics. I turned to the stacks ...more
Laura
May 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic, english-lit
Many critics consider this to be Forster’s masterpiece, and it is hard to imagine a more searing and poignant examination of the social, philosophic, and economic issues facing England during the fascinating window between Queen Victoria and World War I. Forster uses three families—the intellectual and impractical Schlegels, the materialistic and empire-building Wilcoxes (who drove through the bucolic Shropshire countryside and “spoke of Tariff Reform”), and the working class Basts—to explore th ...more
Duane
The Schlegel sisters seemed like characters plucked straight out of a Jane Austen book, or books. Some combination of Emma Woodhouse (Emma) and the Dashwood sisters (Sense and Sensibility). But the story and the style are entirely Forster's. The focus of the story is the social class differences in English society. The setting is Edwardian Era England, sandwiched tightly between the end of the Victorian Era and the beginning of World War I. Most of Forster's novels were published in this 1st dec ...more
Elena
Jun 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, classics
4.5*
Nada me previno en la primera mitad de la novela de lo mucho que iba a acabar gustándome esta historia. Durante la primera mitad pensaba que estaba sobre las 3-3,5*. Se me hacía un poco lento y lo que más disfrutaba era sin duda los temas que exponía. No había leído un clásico que tratara de forma tan directa temas como el sufragismo, el socialismo o el imperialismo. Pero todo se cocía a fuego lento, y a partir de la mitad del libro de repente no podía parar de leerlo
(*Compaginé la lectura c
...more
Glenn Sumi
Howards End is a chatty, witty, philosophical novel about the state of England in the years leading up to the first world war.

There’s a sharp sense of place (Howards End, the estate, was modelled after Forster’s childhood home), and by focusing on three separate families, you certainly understand the social hierarchy of Edwardian England. The book’s famous epigraph (“Only connect...”) refers to the need for humans to empathize with others, cutting across boundaries of class, culture, geography a
...more
Gabrielle
“Howards End” is E.M. Forster’s statement on classism, and because he is E.M. Forster, it is the most elegant and romantic comment on the struggle of classes that you will ever read. It begins with a rich, old money family getting deeply upset by the idea of their youngest son getting entangled with a middle-class, bohemian half-German young woman…

The Schlegel sisters are from a comfortable but middle-class family, that cares about literature and art more than they do about money and status. The
...more
Barry Pierce
I started out liking this. I was even thinking this was going to be my first four-star novel of the year. However, as Howards End progressed I found myself caring less and less about what was going on. By the time I was 50% of the way through I was just waiting for it to finish. I felt the exact same way about Where Angels Fear to Tread. Maybe it's Forster's prose? I don't know. I think Forster and I are going to have a turbulent relationship.
Roy Lotz
It is the little things one bungles at. The big, real ones are nothing when they come.

The last time I reviewed a novel by E.M. Forster, I wound up blubbering with praise; and now I find myself in similar circumstances. As with A Passage to India, I find Howards End exemplary in every respect: the themes, characterization, the prose, the pacing, the plot. I ought also to mention Forster’s versatility. Though rarely funny, Forster is capable of romantic lyricism, gritty realism, and flighty phil
...more
Apatt
Aug 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fave-classics
I vaguely remember seeing the film adaptation of Howards (no apostrophe-s!) End decades ago. I don’t remember much about the plot, I just vaguely (mis)remembered it as a story of some mad old biddy giving a house to Emma Thompson. I suppose if you must give away a house to someone Emma Thompson is not a bad choice, she is pretty cool. Anyway, after recently reading A Room with a View and The Machine Stops I have added E.M. Forster to my much coveted list of favorite classic authors (he missed ...more
Teresa
Dec 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What can I say about this book. I loved it!!!
I would never have picked it up normally but having seen it recently on BBC, a great adaptation by the way, I was interested in learning more. You know the type of stuff I mean, real feelings and inner thoughts that you can only guess at from the screen.
I really liked Margaret. She's a very strong character and the family depend on her totally. She's loyal and loving while still being quite a modern woman for her time.
She manages Henry very well. Kno
...more
Edward
Aug 25, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Introduction
Suggestions for Further Reading
A Note on the Text


--Howards End

Explanatory Notes
Donna
Dec 16, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
It's difficult for me to judge this book on its own merit and not have it suffer in comparison to A Room with a View and Maurice, two books by Forster I recommend. But this book, while interesting at times and full of insights into human nature, as well as it being a meditation on a changing England at the beginning of the twentieth century, fell short for me. Most of the characters were unlikable or unsympathetic people who were either self-centered snobs or well meaning, but clueless about oth ...more
classic reverie
When I write my reviews besides focusing on what the stories mean to me, I also include thoughts that run through my mind that may seem of the mark but in my mind makes sense. Before I read E. M. Forster's Howards End, I had read William Somerset Maugham's Cakes and Ale. Why do I mention Maugham here? I don't know why my brain keeps these two authors so close together in my mind, they are unique in their own ways but many times I have to remember exactly who wrote which story and so I sometimes ...more
Jill Hutchinson
Sep 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
"He has a way with words" is probably a trite expression but it certainly applies to E.M. Forster. His writing is fluid, beautiful, and his stories well thought out. This book, written in 1910 certainly reflects the style of authors of that time but Forster is readable while some others at the turn of the 20th century appear stilted and formal.

The book, set in the time of the publication, is the story of England at the highest point of its hopes but also reveals the one word upon which the coun
...more
David Dennington
Aug 26, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ve seen two film versions of Howards End—both excellent. Forster’s books adapt well to the screen, especially this one and A Room With a View. Both highly popular.

In this book, Forster's themes involve classism and sexism. The Schlegel sisters are half German. England’s links with Germany in pre-WW1 Edwardian England are strong and respectful. Germany is considered to be a world class culture, excelling in philosophy, art, music and science—all things good about the human condition. But all t
...more
Helene Jeppesen
While this book has an interesting plot and deals with various themes, it wasn't executed as well as I would've hoped.
It basically deals with two sisters, Helen and Margaret, and their sister dynamics and family dynamics. However, this is also a story of differences between the middle class and the poor, love, death, hope and revenge. As you can see, the plot contains multiple strong elements, but what had me puzzled was the fact that Forster centers everything around the estate called Howards
...more
Sara
I found rating this book extremely difficult because my feelings about it were all over the place during the reading. There are parts of the book that are so deftly done that they sparkle, there are parts where I wanted to scream “Seriously?” at the top of my lungs.

For the parts I loved, there is the save-the-world good works of the sisters, particularly Helen, that are rooted in imagination rather than reality and cause far more harm than they can grasp. If you have never been hungry, it is ob
...more
C.
I'm afraid I'm going to end up saying most of exactly the same things as I said about A Passage to India, but I guess this one gets an extra star? I'm not sure if that's completely fair, but I rather think I might be mellowing in my old age - I'm starting to give stars for enjoyment. I hear that's what one ages.

So firstly, I was a little bit surprised to find myself liking this book at all, because Forster is rather snotty and British, and he does have a tendency to wax lyrical about the meaning
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Reading 1001: Howard's End by E.M. Forster 5 20 Apr 07, 2019 12:46PM  
Catching up on Cl...: Howards End - SPOILERS 20 58 Mar 30, 2019 02:19PM  
The Readers Revie...: Howards End - Background Information 2 15 Mar 27, 2019 07:19AM  
Catching up on Cl...: Howards End - NO Spoilers 21 68 Mar 07, 2019 09:25AM  
Play Book Tag: Howards End by E M Forster 1 12 Aug 30, 2018 06:48AM  
Bookworm Bitches : June 2018: Howards End 9 38 Jul 20, 2018 08:42PM  
  • Studs Lonigan
  • The Old Wives' Tale
  • Zuleika Dobson
  • Lord of the Flies
  • The Good Soldier
  • The Way of All Flesh
  • The Golden Bowl
  • A Dance to the Music of Time: 4th Movement (A Dance to the Music of Time, #10-12)
  • The Magnificent Ambersons (The Growth Trilogy, #2)
  • The Awakening and Selected Short Fiction
  • The Secret Agent
  • The Shooting Party
  • A Handful of Dust
  • U.S.A.: The 42nd Parallel / 1919 / The Big Money
  • The Wapshot Chronicle
  • The Alexandria Quartet  (The Alexandria Quartet #1-4)
  • A High Wind in Jamaica
  • Dr. Thorne (Chronicles of Barsetshire #3)
2,118 followers
Edward Morgan Forster, generally published as E.M. Forster, was an novelist, essayist, and short story writer. He is known best for his ironic and well-plotted novels examining class difference and hypocrisy in early 20th-century British society. His humanistic impulse toward understanding and sympathy may be aptly summed up in the epigraph to his 1910 novel Howards End: "Only connect".

He had five
...more
31 trivia questions
3 quizzes
More quizzes & trivia...
“Only connect the prose and the passion, and both will be exalted, and human love will be seen at its highest. Live in fragments no longer.” 134 likes
“Only connect!” 132 likes
More quotes…