Val asked:

Stupid question: Do you have to have read "Middlemarch" to enjoy/understand this book? I figure you should want to by the end, but do you think it's prerequisite reading?

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Barbara I listened to this book prior to listening to Middlemarch. I think that listening to (or reading) this book first makes more sense. There is a lot more in Middlemarch than in Mead's book. I found it helpful to have the basic structure and main characters and plot lines in "My life in Middlemarch" made Middlemarch more enjoyable. There are much more details and characters in Middlemarch.
Maurynne Maxwell No. It actually covers Eliot's life and other works also and is more about engaging with literature--interacting with a book throughout a lifetime. I read Middlemarch when I was very young and remember hardly anything about it--makes me want to re-read some classics, but I have other books I go back to, so the book is engaging in a comradely way.
Also--no such thing as a stupid question. Stupid is NOT asking. :)
Joan Countryman A friend recommended "My Life in Middlemarch" and reading it sent me to read "Middlemarch" for the third time. Great summer reading; great reading any time. In fact, after I finished "Middlemarch" I went back to Mead's book for a second reading. Now I'm in the group that thinks "Middlemarch" is one of the best novels in the English language - perhaps the best. If you find it slow going at first, try listening to Juliet Stevenson's reading on Audible Books. And I agree, no stupid questions.
Keith Herrell Not a stupid question. The answer is yes.
Devyn Duffy Not a stupid question at all. I would recommend reading Middlemarch (and Eliot's other major works) before reading this book. If you read this first, you may get lost among the plot and characters, and you'll also get numerous spoilers for the novel.
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by Rebecca Mead (Goodreads Author)
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