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Lorna Doone

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  14,960 ratings  ·  671 reviews
First published in 1869, Lorna Doone is the story of John Ridd, a farmer who finds love amid the religious and social turmoil of seventeenth-century England. He is just a boy when his father is slain by the Doones, a lawless clan inhabiting wild Exmoor on the border of Somerset and Devon. Seized by curiosity and a sense of adventure, he makes his way to the valley of the D ...more
Paperback, 800 pages
Published October 25th 2005 by Penguin Classics (first published 1869)
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Patti Guptill There is a fair amount of description - of the seasons and his surroundings - it's really quite wonderful - the main character keeps saying what a blo…moreThere is a fair amount of description - of the seasons and his surroundings - it's really quite wonderful - the main character keeps saying what a blockhead he is, and yet his descriptions are beautifully poetic.(less)

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Average rating 3.73  · 
Rating details
 ·  14,960 ratings  ·  671 reviews

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Sep 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of 19th century Romantic novels
This enduring 19th century classic (never out of print since it was first published) has been on my radar ever since I saw an old black-and-white film version of it as a kid; but my interest was really piqued by the 2000 BBC/A&E miniseries adaptation. (As it turns out, I would rate the fidelity of the latter to the book at only about 65%; but that's another discussion!) Recently, I nominated it as a common read in the classics group I belong to here on Goodreads, and it won the poll.

Author Black
Lorna Doone, a Romance in Exmoor is a beautiful romance and adventure story set in the South West of England during the Monmouth Rebellion. Set against this historical background, this beautiful novel tells the story of young John Ridd who as he grows into manhood and rights the wrong done to his family and parish by a group of “noble” outlaws and at the same time winning the hand and heart of the beautiful and noble Lorna Doone.

The story is narrated by the protagonist, John Ridd. And Blackmo
Aug 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 19c-lit
What an awesome tale. Written in the 19th century, but telling a tale about the late 1600s during the times of Charles II and James II. Our hero, John Ridd is a simple, albeit wise and honorable farmer who as a young lad meets Lorna Doone of the dreaded, evil outlaw family of higher born Doones, and it's love at first sight.

There are lots of ups and downs and surprises, along with the author's gorgeous prose describing the english countryside and farmlife. You have to pay attention though, as n
Sean Kennedy
May 23, 2012 rated it did not like it
I was surprised at how much I struggled with this book. I love my nineteenth century literature, and I absolutely love the last TV adaptation (although it seems they took the best parts of the book and eradicated all the filler) but there were times I was almost ready to give up on this. It just so happened that then a scene would come along to distract me and hold my attention and then be followed by fifty pages of sheer boredom.

Not to mention that the characters are all unlikable. John Ridd is

Just as good the third time round as the first!

I can't say anything that hasn't already been said so I'll just say what I liked and why.

R. D. Blackmore's descriptions of the countryside and the Doone's valley are some of my favorite parts. One of my favorite chapters is chapter 8, where we first see inside Doone Valley.

Next we have Tom the highwayman with his strawberry horse Jenny. What a pair. Tom manages to be endearing even when he's a thief with an eye for finery.

Lorna Doone has a sweetn
Sep 03, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: language lovers, adventure lovers, romance lovers
Recommended to K. by:
3rd Review
February 2018
Read again to beguile the winter days. So beguiled. Enchanted.

If you are the type of reader who might find great joy in listening to an old man telling his long and rambling love story of a life (imagine a comfortable fireside setting, cushy chairs, popcorn and cocoa) then you will adore this book. If you're the type of reader who would be impatient, bored or even annoyed in such a setting, you will not enjoy this book so leave it alone rather than revile it.

Reader, you m
Mar 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The plethora of interesting aspects to this book makes it difficult to decide about which ones to write. John Ridd is a young boy living in the wilds of western England in the 17th century, when his father is murdered by a band of outlaws who torment, bully and rob the farmers and good people of Exmoor. The Doones occupy their own outlaw village and not only survive by robbing those around them but also prey on the their neighbors for sport. When John Ridd’s father stands up to these bullies, he ...more
It is must read for every fan of historical fiction (especially of seventeenth-century England). I think, not all fans will love the style of writing but still, they should try to read it at least.

It was really good historical fiction. It portrayed superbly everyday life and the impact of big events on common people.

we of the moderate party, hearing all this and ten times as much and having no love for this sour James, such as we had for the lively Charles, were ready to wait for what might happ
141219: i read this because it is a formative romance of my father’s youth. so i read it in two ways, as text, as his interpretation. this is a long book. seems longer because of extensive descriptions, details, action not the least propulsive but qualified with outcome and, usually, protests against doing of or later talking of necessary violence. after the love-at-first-youthful-sight, there must be a hundred pages or more describing political/criminal domination of the those blackguard doones ...more
Jun 17, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Sabatini fans
A pleasant surprise, I admit.

I first saw a copy of this book on my library's (used) bookshelves for 25 cents but even that ridiculously low price didn't tempt me enough to purchase it. I didn't want to get stuck with one of those heavy, portentous, late Victorian tomes that would render me comatose.

Then, however, I watched this version of the book. The plot looked interesting so the next time I was browsing the library's shelves I took the 2-bit plunge and bought the book.

And I'm glad I did. Fro
Being terrible for buying tons of books at a time, which then sit untouched on my physical and virtual shelves for years whilst I get distracted by newer, shinier books, I thought I’d start this year by trying to get through some of my backlog. I picked Lorna Doone - this was a HUGE mistake, nearly robbing me of my reading mojo just two books into the new year.

John Ridd is a farmer in the village of Oare and leads a simple enough life. Bringing in the harvest, going fishing, and hoping to avoid
May 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: england
Well, it’s at least my third reading of this classic set in 17th century England (another childhood favourite) and I’d give it more stars each time. It’s one of those books that grows with you, and you get more out of it with every reading. For one thing, it’s the most romantic book I’ve ever read, and I just fall to my knees (metaphorically!) when I look at this picture -many, many thanks to Ilse for teaching me how to insert an image!


The novel is a romance in the old sense, in that the lov
Jun 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: britain, fiction
It has been a while since I launched myself into a long Victorian novel. Now that I have finished it, I want more. I had never read Lorna Doone by R.D. Blackmore before: It was not in the "main line" of the Victorian novel, but it deserves to be.

Thye story of John Ridd, the honest farmer, and his love for Lorna, who was kidnapped by the outlawed Doones, is a well-told tale, with numerous details of life along the Somerset/Devon border in England's west country. The Doones are real baddies, causi
Apr 12, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: classics, 2016
I was excited to read this *romance not historical* classic, but sadly (very sadly given there were 750 pages of it) it just wasn't really my cup of tea.

Ironically, it was the historical parts of the novel I liked a lot more than the 'romance'. I liked the setting, I liked the way the story was set up with those evil Doones, and I liked all the descriptions of the natural environment and the farmin' life.

What I didn't like, and what made those 750 pages drag, were the characters. We have our pro
I was assigned a (vastly abridged) version of this when I was in grade school, which kept 90% of the plot but cut out a lot of the description and the on and on. This was in 4th or 5th grade, but it has stayed with me ever since. I read the abridged version so many times it literally fell to pieces, and this was my first time reading the unabridged version.

Blackmore wrote in the dialogue of the time, writing "in accent" so to speak, which was difficult to get through at times. For some of his c
Apr 09, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Laura by: Misfit
Available at Gutenberg Project:

Not so good as expected.
Library Shelf
Oct 14, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Well---I think Blackmore outdoes the Brontes in romance and stirring action with Lorna Doone. The best romance action packed novel. I was so proud of myself as an eleven-year old when I read the "dumbed down" version of the book. They need to do a Young Adult version of Blackmore's heavy-weight novel so that readers allergic to anything over 250 pages will pick this one up for a good reading experience. OK---forget it you purists out there---I've already argued in favor of Classic Comics, abridg ...more
M.M. Strawberry Library & Reviews
This story is set about 200 years before it was written, and the story was written over 100 years ago, so it's interesting to see historical fiction that is doubly historical given the time it was written in. Generally, such historical fiction has a different feel to it than contemporary historical fiction, especially since authors in these times who wanted to write in this genre did not have the Internet to research with!

The story itself is fairly good, with enough twists to keep the reader eng
Oct 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a first book to read for Victober!
The perfect sweeping, slightly over the top romance. Highly recommend the audiobook narrated by Jonathan Keeble, John Ridd's voice shines through wonderfully in his performance!
Aug 23, 2007 rated it it was amazing
That Carver Doone's a real bastard, if I remember correctly. ...more
Andrea Zuvich
Jul 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Even better the second time around!
Sarah Sammis
Feb 21, 2008 rated it really liked it
Back in March I tried to read Lorna Doone but realized too late that my copy was a horribly abridged edition. The book was barely recognizable as the original R. D. Blackmore romance. By July I had found a second, older and complete version and added it to my list for the Classics Challenge. In the meantime, other obligations got in the way and I was forced to leave Lorna Doone to the wire.

Lorna Doone is framed around the Monmouth rebellion but the book isn't a historical fiction. The Doone clan
Madolyn Chukwu
Feb 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing

The ultimate nightmare: a woman being shot during her own wedding ceremony! What a scenario. That is what sticks in my mind after reading this book, regarded as a classic. Admittedly I read only one of the shortened abbreviated versions, as many told me there was no way I could read or even understand the original work. But it does not matter. The version I read was exciting though harrowing enough; and one wonders at the simple, often brutal life of the denizens of this British place centuries
Sara Madden
Jun 09, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: classics
I read this in high school because I found a copy my mom had when she was in high school. I loved it so much, I started reading more English literature which carried me into college and ultimately my introduction to Jane Austen and the Brontes. Lorna Doone sent me into a world of great literature in which I will always be grateful. The story of Lorna and John is timeless and gets pushed into the shadows by other great works of art like Romeo and Juliet, Tristan and Isolde and Elizabeth and Darcy ...more
Kailey (Luminous Libro)
Young John Ridd is called home from school when his father is murdered by notorious highwaymen, the Doones. Although others cry out for revenge, young John focuses on working his mother's farm, and growing up tall and strong, without bitterness in his heart.

While he is fishing one day, he comes across the lovely Lorna Doone, the innocent granddaughter of the leader of the Doone clan. The two children become secret friends, and as they grow up, their love blossoms. Lorna is promised in marriage
Marialyce (absltmom, yaya)
While I thought the beginning was a wonderful one, this book as I reached the middle tended to drag for me. I enjoyed the pictures the author painted of the countryside and the characters certainly were presented in a clear and wonderful manner. I liked the characters of John and Lorna and one could not fault their love and the romantic elements that carried throughout the novel. It had all the elements of a great novel incorporating the relevant historical pieces, but the sometimes authentic di ...more
Oct 17, 2016 rated it liked it
Lorna Doone is a beautiful story. It is set in a wild field of England and it was written in 1869 by R. D. Blackmore.
The book, based on a true couple, told us the story of two families, Doone and Ridd who are facing because the first one are the villains of the valley.
And their enmity got worse when one of the Doones kills the father of one boy of the Ridds, who promise revenge against them...until he met Lorna Doone.

John Ridd is the main character of the story and he told us what happended. At
Sep 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This looks like the right cover.

As a young teen, I would read this late into the night while babysitting. When the parents came home, I'd greet them in 1811 English.

In grade 8, my teacher noticed me reading the last in the Anne of Green Gables series (a book I'd spent 3 years looking for, pre-internet), and said it was too young for me.

So, next week I brought in this. Tiny print. Onion skin paper. Huge number of pages.

The teacher stopped bothering me.

After writing my final university exam, I ask
Michael Arnold
Feb 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, fiction
I really loved this book. I have a love for the 18th century, and stories about rural life, and of history. This novel appeals to all of those perfectly. The start is like the novel Cider with Rosie and about growing up in a rural and rough 'agricola' world, the middle involves the political turmoils in the 1700s, and the end is sort of gothically like Jane Eyre, just with guns and firefights with outlaws.

Never read this book? READ IT! READ IT NOW!
Jul 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020
I love first-person narratives, and John Ridd is an adorably awkward but sweet hero. ;) The narrator was wonderful - he IS John Ridd, and he even did the women’s voices well! And the story had some foreshadowing and plot twists that kept me guessing how it would end. A great summer listen.
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Richard Doddridge Blackmore, referred to most commonly as R. D. Blackmore, was one of the most famous English novelists of his generation. Over the course of his career, Blackmore achieved a close following around the world. He won literary merit and acclaim for his vivid descriptions and personification of the countryside, sharing with Thomas Hardy a Western England background and a strong sense ...more

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