Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

I know I promised a book review of The Goose Girl but I ditched it when I got Wuthering Heights at Borders for five bucks. I'll get to it soon, but in the meantime here's a review of Emily Brontë's Wuthering Heights.

"...I am surrounded with her image! The most ordinary faces of men and women—my own features—mock me with a resemblance. The entire world is a dreadful collection of memoranda that she did exist, and that I have lost her!"

Mr. Lockwood is new to the area and as a diversion to fight off the boredom of living in an isolated part of the country, he asks his new housekeeper to tell him the history of his interesting neighbors, including his landlord, Mr. Heathcliff. Mrs. Dean, the housekeeper, turns out to have known this intriguing Heathcliff for most of his life. She launches into a fascinating narrative of the lives and troubles of the Earnshaws and Lintons, the two great families of the neighborhood, and in the middle of all of it, Heathcliff. He starts out as a homeless child with no family or history that anyone knows of. Mr. Earnshaw finds him and takes him into his home to live with his two other children, Catherine and Hindley. Catherine gets used to him eventually and comes to love him dearly; they become as close as twins. Hindley, however, hates Heathcliff for the attention he gets from old Earnshaw and persecutes him throughout their childhood, even making him act as a servant after his father dies. When Catherine and Heathcliff are about seventeen, Catherine becomes friends with their well-to-do neighbors, the Lintons. Their son, Edgar, falls in love with her and she, in a way, with him. Although she privately declares her love for Heathcliff to be incredibly strong, indeed, to be the most important part of her, she ends up marrying the richer, kinder Edgar.
As it turns out, Heathcliff worships Catherine, but he hates Edgar Linton passionately, and begins to carry out a grand scheme of vengeance on the Lintons and Earnshaws that spans nearly twenty years.

No matter what you've heard, this is not a love story. It's a story about a passion, an obsession, and the depressing, often terrifying effects it has on the people involved. The love, if it is love, between Catherine and Heathcliff is very intense and very serious, but it certainly didn't make anyone happy.
I had been scouring Borders for an hour and a half trying to find something affordable that I'd actually read. I found Wuthering Heights and thought, hey, I love one of Charlotte Brontё's works, why not try her sister? In a way, I enjoyed this book. It is well written, though rather drawn out at parts, suspenseful, and fascinating. It is also depressing and disturbing. It's an intense examination of love, hate, compassion and the lack of it. I'd say it is worth reading, especially if you're a fan darker stuff. It wasn't exactly my kind of story, but I understand why it's considered a classic.

So if this sounds good to you, go on and enjoy it. But if you prefer happy endings, read at your own risk.


  1. ***NOTE***

    I am a huge Happy Ending person, but I LOVE THIS BOOK! <3 Just sayin.

  2. If you want to try more Brontë, read Anne Brontë's Agnes Grey! It has been compared to JAne Austen! ;)