Julie Davis's Reviews > Middlemarch

Middlemarch by George Eliot
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Dec 26, 2012

it was amazing

Highly recommended by everybody, including Rose, so it is on my 2013 Goals Reading List.
What do we live for, if it is not to make life less difficult to each other?
This is a gentle tale of many courtships and marriages, of the relationships in community (as we can tell from the subtitle "A Study of Provincial Life"), and above all of how our actions affect others.
People glorify all sorts of bravery except the bravery they might show on behalf of their nearest neighbors.
At about page 600 the story threads suddenly intertwined at a highly accelerated pace and I was fraught with anxiety for Mr. Bulstrode, then for Dr. Lydgate, and at last realized how much Dorothea's suffering had matured her. It made for a highly satisfying ending which was capped by Eliot's final summing up of everyone's lives.
People are almost always better than their neighbors think they are.
Throughout Eliot, as omniscient narrator, drops gentle observation appropriate to the story which are also appropriate to our lives in general.
Blameless people are always the most exasperating.
I cannot possibly share enough of them, or the plot in general, to do this book justice. You must simply try it for yourself.

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Reading Progress

December 26, 2012 – Shelved
February 18, 2013 – Started Reading
February 18, 2013 –
page 24
February 19, 2013 –
page 48
5.31% "The humor continues and the story begins to grow more. Poor Dorothea knows not what she does, one feels. Like Celia, I want to stop her."
February 22, 2013 –
page 80
8.85% "Less humor, more moving along of the plot and introducing of new characters. Always very slowly and gently though ..."
February 25, 2013 –
page 120
13.27% "What insightful commentary about human nature and behavior, delivered in a gentle, matter-of-fact tone via this series of vignettes which are building toward a complete picture of this town (or so I assume)."
March 11, 2013 –
page 130
14.38% "Picked this up to have something more soothing than Twilight Watch or Parable of the Sower for bedtime reading. So funny, so very funny ... love it."
March 14, 2013 –
page 165
March 15, 2013 –
page 185
March 18, 2013 –
page 225
24.89% "Dorothea discovers the difference between idealism and the real man. We knew it was going to happen and felt sorry ahead of time. But I have to admire the way she's recovering so far."
March 22, 2013 –
page 265
29.31% "I now see why Rose kept shoving this into my hands. I keep wanting to tell everyone just how true to life all these versions of relationships and marriage are ... while keeping me fascinated by the stories that connect all of these little groups."
March 27, 2013 –
page 300
33.19% "A bit more action, but that doesn't really matter, I find. I am loving this gentle book and the perceptive, witty observations of the author who doesn't hesitate to insert herself into the conversation, "I think ...""
April 1, 2013 –
page 346
38.27% "Elderly men have died or are very ill ... and this opens the door for possibility in several characters' cases. Interesting how much this gentle story keeps me engaged."
April 11, 2013 –
page 458
50.66% "I am still enjoying this although the pace is definitely sedate. At this point it is not going to be on my Top 10 list ... but I'm also only slightly over halfway through."
April 17, 2013 –
page 600
66.37% "What? The plot thickens! Great drama (in an understated way, of course). Mr. Bulstrode, sir, who'd a thunk it?!"
April 18, 2013 –
page 650
71.9% "Rosamund, Rosamund ... how I'd like to give you a sharp slap right now. You selfish, selfish girl."
April 19, 2013 –
page 675
74.67% "Now all the strands of the stories are suddenly intertwining and I almost can't read fast enough. The blackmailer, Mr. Bulstrode's particular problem, Will's history and desire for Dorothea, Colin Garth's unexpected reaction to hearing details about a particular person ... oh my, my ... it is riveting!"
April 21, 2013 – Finished Reading

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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message 1: by booklady (new)

booklady It is amazing how deeelightful some of these old classics can be! No wonder they are so enjoyable in/with reading groups.

Julie Davis Once again, we see how human behavior is the same then as now. And that's always fun to talk about! :-)

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