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Paperback Middlemarch Book

ISBN: 0199536759

ISBN13: 9780199536757


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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Book Overview

This panoramic work--considered the finest novel in English by many critics--offers a complex look at English provincial life at a crucial historical moment, and, at the same time, dramatizes and explores some of the most potent myths of Victorian literature. Taking place in the years leading up to the First Reform Bill of 1832, Middlemarch explores nearly every subject of concern to modern life: art, religion, science, politics, self, society, human...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

good book...but problems with this edition?

I bought the Barnes and Noble edition of this book back in 2004. I just got around to reading it. I enjoyed it a lot. It's a rich novel with lots of still-relevant insights regarding life. But the edition! There were spelling mistakes or typos on practically every page. It's jarring to read and it began to drive me crazy towards the end. Hopefully there is a new Barnes and Noble edition of the book and they have since corrected these mistakes.

The most intelligent book in the English language

That is high praise, I know, but I couldn't think of any better superlatives. George Eliot writes with such keen insight into such diverse lives, it staggers the imagination. Virginia Woolfe wrote that Eliot was one of the few nineteenth century authors who wrote for grown up people, and I couldn't agree more. She never insults her readers by telling them what their opinion should be of any of her characters. They are all intricately drawn with an even hand, good traits and bad. Just when you think you've found a character that it is impossible to sympathize with, Eliot debunks your opinion in a single poignant paragraph. I read and loved this book in college, and I've read it every two or three years since. It never wears thin. Anyone who wants to know how perfectly seamless a novel can be must read this masterpiece.

Brilliant eloquence

I read Middlemarch 30 years ago for a highschool assignment. It was over my young head. Making it through the 900 pages was like climbing a mountain and back. It took me about 600 pages to get into the book, and hundreds of pages were devoted to the politics and goings on of the time - something I had little interest in. A more mature reader would probably have found that fascinating. YET - Of all the books I have read and heard through the years, it is a few sentences in this book that captured my heart more than any other anywhere. See what you think: "That element of tragedy which lies in the very fact of frequency, has not yet wrought itself into the coarse emotion of mankind; and perhaps our frames could hardly bear much of it. If we had a keen vision and feeling of all ordinary human life, it would be like hearing the grass grow and the squirrel's heart beat, and we should die of that roar which lies on the other side of silence. As it is, the quickest of us walk about well wadded with stupidity." (Middlemarch, a few paragraphs into Chapter 20.) For writing and insight like that, people make pilgrimages. Eliot's writing has thousands of brilliant paragraphs that are stunning in their eloquence and clarity.

This book can heal souls.

The author is a mindreader. The book is readable and funny and the descriptions and dialogue and ideas are great. It has all kinds of stories in it, and many different people. I read somewhere that Eliot was "large in spirit", meaning she was forgiving of the worst of us.

A Literary Masterpiece! Try Reading It Again- It's Worth It!

George Eliot, (nom de plume of Mary Ann Evans), wrote a literary masterpiece with "Middlemarch." I was forced to read this in school at an age when term papers and grades meant more than absorbing the riches this novel contains. I recently gave it another shot, lured back into 19th century English lit. by easier reads, like Jane Austen, whose work I love, and the Brontes. But I don't want to compare apples and oranges. Let it suffice to say, I got back to "Middlemarch" 30 years later. And it was/is so worth the re-read!Ms. Eliot created, with this book, an entire community in England in the mid-1800s and called it Middlemarch. She populated this provincial town with people of every station, local squires and their families, tradespeople, the rising middle class, (Middlemarch, right?), & the poor and destitute, ruthless and honest. She crowded them together, with all their ambitions, dreams and foibles, in this magnificent literary soap opera, and wove a wonderful web of plots and subplots. Ms. Eliot also wrote scathing social commentary and used great wit.The fortunes of Middlemarch are rising in this new era when machines and trains - fast, available transportation - are changing the world, the economy, the politics. Rigid social codes, the British class system, is in danger of being breached. Folks are out to make a quick buck, or a shilling - anything to acquire wealth and enhance social position.Dorothea Brooks lives in Middlemarch. She is an intelligent, sensitive young woman, who wants to dedicate her life to important endeavors. She does not want to settle for a typical marriage and family, but looks toward a more noble cause. As a woman, a professional life is not open to her, nor is the pursuit of intellect, outside of marriage. She weds the elderly Rev. Casaubon, a cold, narcissistic man, thinking that by assisting him with his scholarly research and writing, she will find happiness.Dr. Lydgate comes to Middlemarch to begin his medical practice there. He is an idealist, who has dreams of finding a cure for cholera and opening a free clinic. He meets blonde and beautiful Rosamund Vincie, who fancies him for a spouse...along with a new house, new furniture, an extensive wardrobe, etc.A dashing, romantic Will Ladislaw, nephew of Rev. Casaubon, enters the story, as does Rosie's brother Fred, who wants desperately to marry his Mary, but is out of work and in debt. This cast of richly drawn characters continues to grow with the introduction of Mary's family, the Garths, the banker Bulstrode, friends, relations, and an evil villain or two.This complex novel and portrait of the times, is one of the best reading experiences I have had in a long while. And it didn't hurt at all! :))
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