Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte. Published by MobileReference (mobi)
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte. Published by MobileReference (mobi)

 
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Wuthering Heights is Emily Bront?'s only novel. It was first published in 1847 under the pseudonym Ellis Bell, and a posthumous second edition was edited by her sister Charlotte. The name of the novel comes from the Yorkshire manor on the moors on which the story centres (as an adjective, wuthering is a Yorkshire word referring to turbulent weather). The narrative tells the tale of the all-encompassing and passionate, yet thwarted, love between Heathcliff and Catherine Earnshaw, and how this unresolved passion eventually destroys them and many around them.

Now considered a classic of English literature, Wuthering Heights' innovative structure, which has been likened to a series of Matryoshka dolls, met with mixed reviews by critics when it first appeared, with many horrified by the stark depictions of mental and physical cruelty. Though Charlotte Bront?'s Jane Eyre was originally considered the best of the Bront? sisters' works, many subsequent critics of Wuthering Heights argued that its originality and achievement made it superior. Wuthering Heights has also given rise to many adaptations and inspired works, including films, radio, television dramatisations, a musical by Bernard J. Taylor and songs (notably the hit Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush), ballet and opera.

? Excerpted from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

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Customer Reviews:

  • wuthering Heights!
    My all time favorite book. A truly timeless classic. It has earned its place on the Signet Classics list. ...more info
  • What A Morose Book - A Real Gothic Story
    What a Morose book this is! This is the first book that I have read by the Bronte sisters. I was really looking forward to it. It begins with the story of Mr. Lockwood entering the house of Heathcliff (Wuthering Heights) and the reader finding out that the people inhabiting the house are just nasty. This includes Heathcliff, Hareton and Catherine (the younger).

    Some have indicated that this is a love story. I am not so sure of that. It is clear in the story that Heathcliff was in love with Catherine (the elder) and was deeply hurt when she married Edgar. He goes off for three years and returns with money. However, where and how he got his money is never explained in the story.

    Now that he has returned, it is Heathcliff's intention to get revenge on those that he believed have wronged him. This includes Hindley, Catherine's brother, Edgar, Hareton, Linton (his own son) and Isabella. If he cannot get his revenge on those that wronged him, he will get it on the children of those that wronged him such as Hareton and Catherine (the younger).

    Shortly after he returns, Catherine (the elder) dies but not before giving birth to her and Edgar's dauther Catherine. By this time though, Heathcliff has married Isabella, Edgar's sister. Heathcliff wants to get his hands on Thrushcross Grange since this is the home of Edgar and Catherine. On the day after he is married to Isabella, he basically tells her that he married her to get possession of Thrushcross Grange.

    It is at this point that I realized that Heathcliff was an evil person. It is also at this point that I no longer considered the novel to be a love story. Heathcliff's love has now been turned into hatred. He has one thing on this mind and that is to make those around him miserable.

    When he returns to Wuthering Heights, Hindley is a drunk and an gambler. Hindley's son Hareton will inherit Wuthering Heights but Heathcliff gives money to Hindley and now becomes the mortgagor of the property so that when Hindley dies Heathcliff becomes the owner of Wuthering Heights.

    If Edgar dies without Catherine being married she will inherit Thrushcross Grange. When Edgar gets a letter from his sister, Isabella (remember that is Heathcliff's wife) that she is dying and wants him to take care of her son, Linton (Heathcliff's son too), he goes and gets him from near London. On the night of their return, Heathcliff sends Joseph to get him. The next day Linton leaves to live a Wuthering Heights. Given his condition, he gets Linton to correspond with Catherine but since Nelly and Edgar are standing in the way of their marriage, he forces Catherine to marry Linton. Therefore, when Edgar dies Thrushcross Grange becomes the property of Linton. Linton, being sickly through the whole bood, soon dies and wills the Thrushcross Grange to Heathcliff. At this time, Catherine, Hareton, and Heathcliff are all living at Wuthering Heights and he rents Thrushcross Grange to Mr. Lockwood.

    At the time Catherine (the elder) dies, Heathcliff asks that her ghost haunt him. In the last couple of chapters, it appears that Heathcliff continually sees Catherine's ghost. Heathcliff fails to eat and eventually dies. At that time, Hareton and Catherine are falling in love, which is the only happy part in the book (other than Heathcliff dying).

    All in all, this is a very dark story. This is a story of love (at first) and then hatred. This is a story of how hatred can destroy a person as well as those around him. It is a good story but I don't consider this a love story. Heathcliff is an evil person that never changes his ways of making other miserable. He enjoys making other miserable. I liked the book but it is just a little too dark for me to give it a five star rating....more info
  • Love Upon the Moors
    "Wuthering Heights" is one of the true classic romantic novels for all time. Emily Bronte's novel was controversial at the time because of the lovers who defied social mores,and that Heathcliff was an anti-hero. It's the original gothic novel. Stephenie Meyer claims to be an heiress to Bronte,even having her heroine Bella read "Wuthering Heights",but can't hold a candle to the classic.

    "Wuthering Heights" has a simple premise. Catherine's father adopts a gypsy boy,Heathcliff. The two have a bond like brother and sister,but as they grow older it becomes more romantic. Catherine marries the gentle,kind,aristocratic Edgar despite the fact Heathcliff passionately desires her. Their love remains ambiguous. Did they have a mutual longing for death? Heathcliff is abusive to Catherine,avoiding her when she pines for him,wishes she were in Hell after she dies,and abuses his children. Did their love have a sexual element,making the lovers at the end unknowing half-siblings,the children of the same mother but different fathers? Some have argued that Cathy&Heathcliff's love is so metaphysical they never shared the bed,and that Cathy despises sex anyhow. Cathy's passion for the moors drives her to mental,then physical illness.

    "Wuthering Heights" is as beautiful and fierce now as it was back in the 19th century. Bronte powerfully evokes the wilderness,as well as the cruelty,obsession,and passion between her leads. The moors remain as wild today....more info
  • Wretched and Painful
    I've never before written a negative Amazon reader review. As an author, I know how much they can sting, and I try to limit myself to only reviewing books I've really enjoyed. However, since the author is long dead, I doubt I can hurt her feelings. And if by my words I can possibly prevent one other person from undergoing the suffering I've endured, I'll feel that my job here is done.

    I decided that at the age of 52, it was time I started reading some of the classics that I'd missed along the way. I read PRIDE AND PREJUDICE first, and though I found Ms. Austen's writing to be tedious, the book was mildly entertaining. I thought I'd try Emily Bronte's WUTHERING HEIGHTS next. I'd always heard how romantic the story was, and no less than three people, upon seeing me with the book, told me, "You'll love it! You'll absolutely love it!"

    Please tell me you're kidding.

    This book is wretched. Painful to a degree I've never before experienced. I've read books that put me to sleep, books I found impossibly dull, books I found too stupid for words. But I have NEVER hated a book so much in my life. The characters in their entirety don't possess a single redeeming value. They are miserable, obnoxious, hateful excuses for human beings. Even the DOGS are hateful. Why should I care what happens to any of these awful people? Why should I care if they've made themselves miserable through their own choices and then spend the rest of the book whining and complaining about how pathetic their lives are?

    I hadn't realized just how much I loathed them until halfway through the book, when a major character died, and all I could think was, "THANK GOD! THANK GOD!"

    And then, there's the dialect. Ah, the dialect! I could tolerate it if it was used sparingly. But when a certain character goes into a speech that lasts for half a page of small print, in a language that can only be described as Not Even Resembling English (yes, I know it's supposed to be Scottish), the result is unbearable pain. Every time this character speaks (which is, thankfully, not often), I find myself puzzling over his words in an attempt to translate them into something that seems even mildly coherent. Sometimes, it's possible to do this just by context. At other times, I shake my head in bewilderment and disgust and simply move on to a different page. Considering how slowly the story moves (is there a storyline? a point to all this suffering?), I could probably skip entire chapters and not miss anything.

    I'd also like to know where the romance is. Since everybody in this book seems to hate everybody else, with the notable exception of the uncouth monster, Heathcliff, and the spoiled-rotten, obnoxious Catherine, I can't fathom where that might lie. Am I too dense to understand? Or has the literary world been tricking us for 150 years, convincing the sheep of the world to follow along in praise of this "romantic" classic?

    I think I would rather have my fingernails pulled out forcefully, one at a time, than finish reading this book. I'm halfway through, and life is short. Am I really willing to spend that much more of my short time here on earth torturing myself just for the satisfaction of knowing I actually read the dreadful thing? I think not.

    I also think my foray into the classics has ended right here. I'm off to read some Robert Parker or Janet Evanovich. Maybe even some Jackie Collins. Anything to cleanse my palate of the terrible aftertaste of Heathcliff and Catherine.

    To each his own. I know there are people who rave about this book, people who love it. I'm glad somebody does. Every book deserves to be loved by somebody. But in this case, with this particular book, that somebody will have to be Somebody Else. Because it certainly isn't me.

    ...more info
  • There is nothing worse than a book by a Bronte sister.
    Maybe the title is a bit harsh. Sometimes Henry James can beat a Bronte sister in forcing banality onto a book. The title is mostly true though, the Bronte sisters have added nothing to literature than generic cruddy love stories in bland settings with too many words. Between Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights, I have to say that the latter is the worst of the pair, Jane Eyre taking a close second in the "worst books of all time" competition. My suggestion is to skip out on this book entirely and burn all copies you have of it....more info
  • A Twisted Tale of Obsession, Love, Class, Hate and Fate
    Wuthering Heights is a surprisingly modern novel given that its authorship predates our modern understanding of psychology. Like many modern novels, Ms. Bronte has also explored the darker side of human passions and psyches more thoroughly than the sunnier side. Heathcliff will remind you of classic characters whose lives were twisted by fate like Captain Ahab in Moby Dick, Erik in Phantom of the Opera, Quasimodo in The Hunchback of Notre-Dame, and the mysterious prisoner in The Man in the Iron Mask.

    If there were ever two star-crossed lovers who have captured the world's imagination since Romeo and Juliet, they must be Catherine and Heathcliff. Yet, unlike, many such pairs, their unhappiness is heavily influenced by themselves.

    As you contemplate their story, you are constantly drawn to the thought, "what if" thus and such had occurred differently? That's part of the great power of the story because it has so many unexpected twistings and turnings. A reader's expectations from a love story are turned upside down, sideways and diagonal from where those expectations normally rest. As a result, you'll probably decide this isn't a love story after all . . . but a tragedy. Taken from that perspective, you'll find yourself hearing echoes of Lady Macbeth and King Lear as you contemplate what occurs when the natural order is disturbed. Few English authors since Shakespeare have captured that sense of what can happen when the universe is disarranged.

    What's great about this story? It's pretty simple: Emotional intensity in the writing; deeply memorable characters; doomed lovers; and a haunting glimpse at unshakeable obsession.

    What's not so great? The story development itself is pretty awkward. Much of the story is told in flashback which steals power and immediacy from the narration. If ever a story cried out for being told in the first person (by Heathcliff, Catherine, Edgar Linton, Hareton and young Catherine), it's Wuthering Heights. The transitions from one key moment to another are often very abrupt. Sometimes it is 150 pages later before you get the full sense of what Emily Bronte meant to convey in some of those transitions.

    What's less than great? The characters aren't nearly as appealing as those you'll usually find in a novel dealing with these issues. In that sense, the novel is more realistic than fictional . . . which helps create some of its immense power. It's probably a worthwhile price to pay.

    Whatever you think of Wuthering Heights, you owe it to yourself to read one of the most moving tales that has ever been written. Pick a time when you're feeling reasonably happy to start the book. Otherwise, you may find your mood to be more than a little darkened for a few days.


    ...more info
  • Named a Classic for a Reason
    This compelling story of hate has enthralled readers for generations with good reason. From the classic scene of Lookwood encountering Catherine Linton's ghost, I was hooked. Though the plot is not always fast-moving, it is strong and compelling. It is fun for readers to draw parallels between the two generations outlined in this novel. The atmosphere of the novel is one of mystery, set up early in the first few chapters. Though most of the characters are despicable in some way, hearing about their lives through Nelly's eyes is irresistible. The novel is littered with violence, and the "moral" of the story is unclear to the reader, as it possibly was to the author herself, yet it does make a few important points. Love is not everything, for example, is stressed from the moment that Catherine Earnshaw becomes a Linton. With vivid imagery and extremely psychological characters, Emily Bronte created a classic truly deserving of the title....more info
  • AH HEATHCLIFF
    This book is without question one of the darkest and most enigmatic classics in English Literature, you will find a miriad of opinion on the book. I for one think it's a great character study, and Bronte's prose are singular. At its heart this is of course a love story, but a brutal one. Heathcliff, is one of the most famous or infamous characters in English Literature, he is truly an enigma. His relationship with Catherine, and its consequences are of course the crux of the novel. Heathcliffs love for her is all consuming, you keep waiting for him to say, I wish I could quit you. Their love is at once beautiful and at second glance toxic. Everybody should read this book, whether you love it or not, I assure you it will stay with you..forever. ...more info
  • Macabre and Complex Love Story
    Wuthering Heights is not the creepiest classic in existance, but it is delightfully morbid, what with insane make-out sessions with corpses, and still has a beautiful ending and a bit of happiness in the last chapter. However, I have heard so many people call it boring or difficult to read that I have become apalled and have lost hope for the future of the human race.

    The characters of Wuthering Heights are the element of the book most frequently attacked. But Heathcliff is NOT evil!! How would anyone feel, never wanted by anyone in their entire life but one woman, and then to be cast off by that same woman? How would anyone feel in his shoes? He is a git and he is a dreadful person, but he is a complex and layered character, deeply troubled and very well written. As for everybody else, not a one is really likeable, but not a one is evil. They are only what they world has made them, Cathy the younger spoiled and Hindley abused. And if you still don't like them? Well, take comfort that most of them die.

    My second point is that this book is NOT hard to read. The gamekeeper's dialogue is, granted, impossible. But he hardly talks anyway. Also, the family tree is equally difficult, but it helps to draw your own as you go along. However, other than that the text is simple and the plot-line straightforward. The beauty is in the descriptions.

    This is a love story of epic proportions. It doesn't illustrate the beauty of love until the end, but also incorporated is platonic love of family and friends. Yet nevertheless, love triumphs upon the finale, and it does truly tell of true love. True love isn't perfect, but it is, in essence, everlasting. And this book tells of nothing if not everlasting love: "Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same." - Catherine Linton (once Catherine Earnshaw), relating to Heathcliff. ...more info
  • a stunning novel
    Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

    This book is dark, despairing, passionate, and breathtaking from first page to last. This is a true classic. Highly recommended.
    ...more info
  • Free SF Reader
    Set on the moors, it is a pity that the Hound of the Baskervilles didn't get 'em. This would have saved a lot of characters a lot of grief. An orphan is taken in, and the problems start there as he grows up, has his own problems and inflicts them on others. The great detective has something to say about such places : "But look at these lonely houses, each in its own fields, filled for the most part with poor ignorant folk who know little of the law. Think of the deeds of hellish cruelty, the hidden wickedness which may go on, year in, year out, in such places, and none the wiser. Had this lady who appeals to us for help gone to live in Winchester, I should never have had a fear for her. It is the five miles of country which makes the danger." ...more info
  • Amazing
    I just finished reading Wuthering Heights and, though I never really had much of an interest in romances, this book changed my perspective. The characters are interesting if not likeable, and it would be impossible to guess where the plot would turn next, it being controlled by a fabulous imagination. The book is wonderful, I got to a certain point- a point early on, too- and I could not stop reading. ...more info
  • Wuthering Heights
    I haven't read this book yet, but my Mom did. She really liked the book and it was in great condiction....more info
  • Slow Read At The Start, But It Has a Strong Finish
    This is the only novel by Emily Bronte, one of the three English Bronte sisters. Emily lived for just 30 years: 1818 to 1848.

    I bought and read this Penguin Classic version of Wuthering Heights. It has a good preface by Lucasta Miller, author of "The Bronte Myth," and it has an introduction by Pauline Nestor, who has written two books on the Bronte sisters including "Charlotte Bronte' in 1987, and a related book "George Eliot" in 2002. I read the analysis after reading the book and I recommend that you not read too much about the details of the story until you have read the book. I read the book after reading "Jane Eyre" and "Shirley." I read the three books one after the other.

    "Jane Eyre" by Charlotte Bronte has touches of Dickens and Jane Austen in a fictional biopgraphy of a young English woman. That novel is more conventional in plot and structure and it is a compelling read. It was a big hit in 1847 and was a much bigger and more popular novel than "Wuthering Heights" - published the same year in 1847. Both sisters used male pseudonyms. The present novel has become more popular and better accepted with the passage of time. Even today, "Jane Eyre" remains as the more popular novel, but now there is a strong appreciation of what Emily Bronte has created: it is an unusual piece of literature. Some think that it shows much more originality than the popular work of Charlotte.

    In short, Emily Bronte has created a horror book which is mostly grounded in reality. The characters have the problems within themselves. There is nothing unusual or super-natural in the book. The novel is short and concise. It is a well written and entertaining novel. But unlike most novels, it is hard to have sympathy with any characters. One likes certain people in the book because they are not as bad or as outrageous as some of the others. I guess we could say the protagonists are Heathcliff and Catherine Earnshaw. The latter is somewhat sympathetic while Heathcliff is a man with serious problems. All in all it is very convincing.

    Also, Emily Bronte uses the story within a story technique: it is a narrative told by a housekeeper with the beginning and closing chapters used to form the story and bring closure.

    The novel is slow to start but most who can get through the first 100 pages will be well rewarded.

    I highly recommend this Penguin Classic.
    ...more info
  • Awesome
    This is one of the most enduring love stories of all time. Heathcliff and Cathy symbolize longing and true love....more info
  • Well-written but Heathcliff is just not a happy guy!
    I finally read this classic after many years of intending to. My only exposure to the story was the film starring Laurence Olivier and Merle Oberon. About halfway through I'm thinking....was the movie this dark? Why do I not remember Heathcliff being so ruthless? Well, turns out the movie version I saw only covers the first half of the book (as I learned through Wikipedia). I imagine the filmakers found second-half Heathcliff to be so unlikeable that even the dashing Olivier could not redeem him.

    The book was immensely compelling literature, and frankly I tore through it, but I had a hard time sympathizing with Heathcliff's unsatiable appetite for revenge. The second half of the book is like "My Name is Earl" in reverse. "Hmm, who wronged me and how can I avenge them? Hindley? Check. Edgar? Check." It overshadowed whatever love there was between he and Catherine. Not to mention that Catherine was by all accounts a spoiled, unlikeable brat.

    So 4 stars because it is a fine piece of literature, but wow....not what I was expecting. Dark, dark, dark. Not that dark is inherently bad (Anna Karenina and House of Mirth end shall we say, darkly, and they are two of the best books on earth), but I think I'll stick with Darcy and Elizabeth for my romantic leads.
    ...more info
  • A Love Story? Bah!
    Where can one even begin on this book? I have just a few seconds ago finished this book and I am completely speechless...but not with admiration.
    Yes,PERHAPS Emily Bronte might have written this well but EVERY other aspect of this books is extremely flawed. Good literature it may be to some but good characters, morals, story it is most certainly not. I completely 100% agree with a reviewer who wrote that she hated Heathcliff being described as some alpha male. Reader, believe me, he is the farthest thing from it. How can all these people talk about WH as being a love story? Some call it Powerful Love, Passionate Love, Strongest Love that Could Ever Exist, etc etc. Believe me when I say Heathcliff has ABSOLUTELY NO LOVE for Catherine. Nor she for him. All of it is just a matter of obsession. Their "attachment" to each other is purely selfish. This book has not ONE admirable character in it. All are either foolish or wicked. Heathcliff is nothing good and honest but obsession, jealousy, cruelty, baseness, dishonesty, and selfishness are the elements of his character as well as Catherine's I might add. Perhaps if Emily Bronte would have brought out all the folly of the characters and spoken of their error it would have had some merit. But the book starts off in bad and till the end no one grows or improves their moral characters. If the wickedness of a person can only be erased by extinguishing the the person himself what moral is there to be learned at all? I had not the slightest big of emotion except relief when I finished this. When I read a book I feel so engrossed in it, almost as if I know every character and am part of their world. HA! Emily Bronte has such a superb power of making you feel like you are only reading blank words on a page...I felt no connection with the characters at all. ...more info
  • Interesting Relationships
    This novel is far from what I expected.

    I had listened to many of my friends judge Cathy and Heathcliff very harshly, and I went into the book expecting to explore the evilness of human nature. Instead, I found that Bronte broke barriers by producing two very real characters.

    Cathy and Heathcliff's story explores the consequences to the character's decisions. Bronte does not gloss over the reasons for the decisions (money, greed, breeding, retaliation, etc), but those reasons play a minimal role. Instead, she chooses to show how a human reacts to a good/bad decision, and when life doesn't go his or her way.

    My suggestion for reading Wuthering Heights is to place yourself in Cathy and Heathcliff's shoes and figure out if there was another choice for their behavior. ...more info
  • Masterpiece of the Macabre
    Wuthering Heights is a love story. But it is not your typical, love conquers all tale. It is a dark, twisted story of obsession, greed and lust that spans beyond the grave. What really strikes me about the story still is how dark it is. And I don't mean 'given the time it was written' because the story is legitimately dark no matter what era it is set in.

    In the story Bronte perfectly frames two very different kinds of love. There is the healthy love that the tragic heroine of the story has for her husband. There is a fondness in that love that seems destined to grow and flourish. But, there is also an unhealthy, all consuming fiery love between the heroine and the devil of the story, our tragic hero, the scoundrel Heathcliff. So consuming and obsessive is the love between the two that it becomes dark and twisted. Their love is so unhealthy and obsessive that it consumes and devours both of them. It all sounds so amazingly romantic but what it drives the characters to: insanity, murder, captivity, and revenge makes even their proclamations of love to one another macabre.

    On a side note, Heathcliff, the center of the story for most intents and purposes, is so damned intriguing. I haven't really encountered a character quite like him in literature. You find yourself wanting to know more about him and can't helping thinking that a man who could love so deeply could be so damned evil! But oh, he is...

    Far and away, Bronte succeeds in the book in creating characters who are both sympathetic and intolerable. None of the characters are entirely loveable, save for the story teller herself. Otherwise there is a pathetic air among everyone save for Heathcliff who seems the only one in the novel who can exploit this weakness. It makes for a lot of moments of cringing as you can almost see the gears of evil genius working in Heathcliff's head.

    My only complaint with the book is the conveinance of pregnancy. Never is it mentioned until the child is born and never is the mother said to be or appear pregnant. It wasn't enough to entirely take me out of the story but I did roll my eyes on every instance. That is really the only hard argument I can make of Bronte taking an easy way out in her plot but given this is her first and only attempt at a novel, I can let it go as it truly is a masterpiece....more info
  • Gothic romance
    A mysterious work of doomed romance, depressing landscapes, and Gothic moods. How can this possibly NOT work?

    The story immediately draws you in with a nameless traveler who finds himself needing a place to stay. Here he enters a house of definite spookiness and becomes wrapped up in the incredible story of its history.

    This is not a happy book, but it's intriguing, exciting, and darkly romantic. It's about people who want to be together despite all-powerful fate. It's about a romance that transcends generations, destiny, and individuals looking for their own way with a breath-taking Beauty and the Beast theme.

    Very few of the characters are likeable. In fact, I can't think of a single person I really liked. But they are powerful and you just can't help but root for them. Evil here is vague, and it seems all the characters have a touch of villainy.

    So here is pain, heartache, and drama galore. Totally wonderful. ...more info
  • Do you call this love?
    This classic has a reputation as being a grand "love" story. It is more about dark obession than "love". The characters are all psychologically damaged people (nuts) who seem to thrive on making each other miserable. I cannot figure out what Catherine had that made two men fall madly in love with her--she is spoiled, selfish, and extremely stupid. Edgar is a spineless wimp who certainly knew he had a rival--but refused to deal with it. Heathcliff is a sadist who is obessed with (not in love with) Catherine; he is willing to harm even himself to cause suffering to other people. Who could love a man that nasty? Isabella is another silly woman who could not see what was going on around her and falls in "love" with her imagined version of Heathcliff. And on and on...Nelly Dean is the only sane person in this novel, and she was crazy to stay around these looney families as long as she did.

    The atmosphere saves the book from complete ruin--it is as dark ,moody, and brooding as the characters. Even the houses seem to snarl and brood and take on the personalities of characters. One is compelled to continue in the book just to see how much more crazy things will get with every body being so dysfunctional and obssessed with having their way. The writing is poetic, and the final scene between Catherine and Heathcliff could be touching--if you can forget how absurd it is.

    Maybe I am too much of a realist to get carried away with this type of novel. I would not touch Heathcliff with a ten foot pole and can't imagine what women see in the character, other than dark good looks. I cannot imagine what a man would see in Catherine. Or how any of these crazy characters' actions spell l-o-v-e....more info
  • A riveting, dark tale of love
    Though this story overall had a dark essence to it, I believe that an unrelenting passion was shared between Catherine and Heathcliff. Of course, in my view, both characters are selfish and share a fury in great magnitudes. But then again, these similar characteristics are what make them such a match made in heaven...or more accurately, a match made in hell. Even with the hatred, I still believe this is a great love story. Love can be shrouded in varying shades, from happy gay tones to the more darkening hues.

    The greatest burst of sunshine in this dreary novel would probably come fron Nelly Dean, who was practically the only character with a head on her shoulders. Just the fact that she was able to serve with such a crazed family for so long and come out sane in the end is and indication of her strong, noble personality.

    In this story, the line between hatred and love is precariously thin. ...more info
  • tragically beautiful
    i came across wuthering heights while i was reading the twilight series,specifically "eclipse" as it was mentioned in it..i was curious as to what the book was all about so i read it..

    in my opinion, it is tragically beautiful especially the catherine-heathclif's moments. true, both of them are horrible, horrible human being but when it comes to their relationship, you can't help but to root for them. One of my favourite part was when catherine was deciding whether or not to marry linton and had explained what heathcliff meant to her to her housekeeper. My favourite quotes from that part: "my great miseries in life has been heathcliff's", "he is more than myself than i am" and my favourite which was mentioned in eclipse, "if all else perished and he remains, i should still continue to be. but if all else remained and he were anihilated, the universe would turn into a mighty stranger"

    Another favourite part was when both of them were reunited before catherine died. there was a speck of humanity in them when they were reunited and you somehow forget how horrible they were.

    Another favourite part was when heathcliff learned that catherine died and the way he handled the news, it was devastating and for that moment, i feel sad for him and again, forget for a moment of how rude and vicious his character is. that one small paragraph was a mix of love and grieve all together which was written with so much power that I had to stop reading for a minute to digest it.

    the story is mostly about the consequences of the love between catherine and heathcliff..their love affected a lot of people and i guess it shows the dark side of love and obsession....more info
  • holds up well after 150 years
    I have always meant to read "Wuthering Heights", but, until recently,
    never got around to it. Following a recommendation
    I read "The Thirteenth Tale" by Diane Setterfield. After being quite
    disappointed with that book, I followed the advice of other reviewers
    to read Emily Bronte's original. I have to agree that "Wuthering
    Heights" is incomparably better than Setterfield's effort. Reading
    the two books together so closely was actually quite enlightening.
    While both are dark, Bronte's book is so with reason. And while
    both books abound with odious characters, in "Wuthering
    Heights" they are not caricatures. I would not recommend
    Setterfield's book to anyone, but reading it made me appreciate
    E. Bronte all the more....more info
  • Better than I expected!
    My 13-year old daughter loves this book so I thought that I would try it, fulling expecting to put it down after 30 pages or so. I couldn't! It's not perfectly presented, but the novel does entice the reader into the bizarre world of Wuthering Heights. I normally read war novels (lots of blood and violence) and honestly, Wuthering Heights in some ways is as violent as they are. It is both disturbing and satisfying. I recommend it....more info
  • good book
    I really enjoyed Wuthering Heights once I made it past the first 40 pages or so...that's when it really picked up. I think it was a nice story and well told. I don't want to give anything away, but it's a really good book and I definitely recommend it along with Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte....more info
  • Wuthering Heights: One of the greatest English novels ever written
    "Wuthering Heights" is a cruel,complex, unforgettable look at possessive love. The 1847 novel was the only one witten by Emily Bronte.
    The story tells of Heathcliff who is an orphan adopted on a Liverpool journey by Mr. Earnshaw. He brings the ragged lad back home to the wild moors of Yorkshire. Heathcliff is mistreated by the oafish Hindley Earnshaw the son of the family. He spends long dreamy hours wandering the moors with Catherine the Earnshaw daughter. After many complications Heathcliff leaves England for mysterious regions. He returns years later to discover Catherine has married the weak milquetoast Edgar Linton who gives Catherine the security and kind love of a well to do landowner.
    Catherine dies giving birth to daughter Cathy. Heathcliff weds the infatuated sister Isabella sister of Edgar Linton. In the second half of the novel Catherine's daughter will wed the son of Heathcliff and Isabella. Isabella has fled from the cruel Heathcliff dying at an early age.
    The novel is structured as a flashback to events told by Nelly Dean a nurse to Catherine who relates them to Mr. Lockwood a shallow English dandy who has rented Thrushcross Grange following a failed romantic affair.
    The novel switches from past to present dealing with many characters with similar names. Heathcliff is often called satanic and is a figure of Dantian and Satanic power. He is very cruel killing small animals; driving Isabella away and insulting everyone. He mistreats his son and his alcoholic nephew. Heathcliff is as rough as a crag of rock on the wild moors. He longs for a complete soul union with Catherine. He even has her dug up from the grave so he can look at her dead face! Necrophilia, sadism, overt cruelty to the weak are everday occurrences at Wuthering Heights which is ruled by the tyrant Heathcliff and his mean toady servant the repulsive Bible thumping Joseph.
    Catherine is petulant, violent, selfish and cruel. Neither Heathcliff or Catherine are admirable characters. They apparently love and long for one another. At one point Catherine tells Nelly "Heathcliff and I are one soul." Following her death she will haunt Heathcliff as she roams the stark moors in neither heaven or hell.
    Libraries have been built dealing with the complexity of this novel. It demands several rereads. Let it be said that the novel is always fresh, suprising and modern. Wuthering Heights is not your typical love story. It is harsh, stark and cruel. Read it and ponder this tale of ghostly, obsessive, dreamliike love set against the dark brooding moors of Yorkshire. The characters will leave a permanent imprint on your mind and heart....more info
  • Wuthering Heights
    A truly classic novel and a quick read- HOWEVER, some of the "local dialect" of one of it's characters is difficult to decipher and seems to be written phonetically!
    The rest of the characters are easily read and the book truly IS a classic!!!! I enjoyed it greatly.
    ...more info
  • A Great Tragedy
    This is a great novel. It is easy to ready but not easy to get into since it is a little bit slow and dark from the first page. However, the story evolves and slowly grows on you.

    I found the book a great description of one perspective of love, an unsatisfied love that keeps growing until it finally consumes the lovers.

    Some of the paragraphs are great to read in the way they explain the emotional struggle of the characters.

    Highly recommended....more info
  • Unsettling and brooding
    That's how I would describe this novel. I first read it when I was 15 and hated it. I couldn't understand what the appeal was about these savage, ruthless, selfish characters. I was obsessed with Jane Eyre, but Wuthering Heights seemed a distant, incomphrehensible world. But now, nearly 20 years later, I have a better appreciation of it. It really is worth reading - just persevere through the first 50 pages or so, and you'll be sucked in.

    I haven't seen the Laurence Olivier film, but am curious now to see how this bleak and twisted world is portrayed on screen. ...more info
  • Classic
    This is a true classic. No movie has ever done it justice. The parallel structure within the characters' genealogical table is phenomenal.
    Highly Recommended.

    James Conroyd Martin, Author of PUSH NOT THE RIVER and AGAINST A CRIMSON SKY Push Not the River
    ...more info
  • Horrid....
    Wow! I read tons of books, love classic literature, have eclectic tastes and I am a very passionate person...I can definitely get into the dark, forbidden romance thing & have definitley felt love sweet love!! I actually, usually enjoy... to absolutely love what I read......I have to say that This was I think my least favorite, the worst book I have ever read....probably in my life. Strange how things hit us just a certain way. I found all of the characters despicable, and love story? where was it? I felt nothing for or between any of these sickos. I could go on in detail about why I feel this way but basically it was just Pathetic.......more info
  • Darkly beautiful
    One of my favorites. I'm sure i will read it many more times more. A gothic love story, far from the usual heartwarming ones. I don't know what it is like to love a person so much to wreathe in agony and anguish forever. This made for an excellent read for precisely that. The narrative is gripping. All the characters, save Nelly and the narrator(i forget the name now), vie with each other in being degenerative. The amount of evil portrayed is sometimes off-putting. Even after several reads, i still don't 'get it'. How can Heathcliff and Catherine be so much in love, yet so dark and cruel?...more info
  • No wonder it's a set text...albeit a little difficult
    As someone who is long out of high school, I thoroughly enjoyed reading Wuthering Heights (and properly this time!)

    One literary critic I read somewhere said that the sheer number of characters is deliberately confusing. Certainly, it doesn't make it any easier that there are two Catherines. Nor the frequent use of surnames, rather than first names and vice versa, quite interchangably.

    Like many reviewers before me I found many of the characters thoroughly odious and of moral outrage. Why Nelly Dean doesn't just leave them all is a mystery to me.

    One thing I found of great help to my understanding of the book was to paste a clearer copy of the family tree to the inside-front cover of the book. I found this on page 308 of The Scribner Companion to the Bront?s by Barbara and Gareth Lloyd Evans. The marriages and births are clearer and far more readable.

    I also felt the need to take notes from a number of other literary critical works on the book to get my head around the whole plot, the characters, themes, imagery and Haworth landscape.

    Perhaps for the most serious among us there is a concordance to Wuthering Heights! This is great for those doing a paper on some certain theme found in the book, who want to find all the references to that topic all in one place. If you are wanting to find it: A Concordance to Bront?'s Wuthering Heights by C. Ruth Sabol and Todd K. Bender, Garland Publishing, Inc. New York/London, 1984, Garland Reference Library of the Humanities Vol. 428.

    Thoroughly recommended. It only loses a star because I would have enjoyed something slightly less complex, which is really just a reflection on this poor reviewer, rather than Emily Bront?....more info
  • It really helps!
    This is one of the Best ways of learning SAT vocab, or simply vocab for your own personal gain. Read the classic work on the right, SAT words are bolded and defined on the left. The real kicker is that words are repeated throughout the book. After seeing words over and over you learn them extremly well. Great Concept, Great Study Aid, Great Book! ...more info
  • Why would you give this a 5?
    Did not like this at all. The fact that it was short was the only reason I finished it. I am not too sure what the appeal of this book is to others.
    ...more info
  • Truly exceptional.
    This purely wonderful novel is indisputably a classic, with many wonderfully unique and complex characters that are, at the same time, very hard and very easy to relate to. Just the whole novel and all aspects of it are just breathtaking from first page to last. Recommended to anyone who wants to take a break back to a time where every word is well deserved to be read. Not a book to skim by any means....more info
  • Wuthering Heights: towering passions
    I first read this novel 40 years ago and love it as much today as I did then.

    In Heathcliff, Emily Bronte has delivered both an archetypal hero and an archetypal villain. Heathcliff signals early what his objectives are, and then sets out to achieve them. In doing so, he is neither bound by convention nor swayed by consideration for any other person except Cathy.

    Cathy, in her own way, loves Heathcliff quite as fiercely but she is prepared to try to work within the more conventional bounds of society to try to achieve this.

    And herein lies tragedy. Cathy Earnshaw is no more fitted to be a conventional wife to Edgar Linton than Isabella Linton is to influence Heathcliff. Heathcliff himself is quite willing to destroy both the Earnshaws and the Lintons in his quest. But what, precisely, is Heathcliff seeking?

    Heathcliff's actions, and whether or not they are justified, are often what readers remark on in discussing this book. However,it is Cathy's attempt to tie together her love for Heathcliff with her sense that operating within convention is desirable that unleashes the events that follow.

    All life ends in death. And ultimately, this is where Cathy and Heathcliff are united forever. Despite himself Heathcliff has chosen not to destroy Hareton and Catherine. As the book closes, we are left with two clear images: Heathcliff and Catherine together, and hope for the future in the form of Hareton Earnshaw and Catherine Linton.

    This is Emily Bronte's only published novel. It is my all-time favourite novel.

    Jennifer Cameron-Smith...more info
  • Timeless
    One of my personal criteria of a "classic" novel - and a reason these certain books are read and re-read throughout the years - is some kind of illumination of our human nature. 'Wuthering Heights,' in my opinion, is one of these novels. On the surface, it is a love story. But deeper than that, the characters could be any of us. How many times have we been our own worst enemy? In this story, the characters make decisions that we, as the reader, know are the wrong decisions. Yet it is easy to identify with the mistakes that the characters make. Any of us could (and have) made those same wrong decisions. Perhaps this is why this novel has resonated with so many readers and made the story so timeless.

    Read it for a good story, then think about it later and put yourself in the character's shoes. I think you'll find it illuminating and something that will stick with you a long, long time....more info
  • I can see why we call this a "classic"
    Anyone who is a frequent reader of this blog knows of my aversion to classics. I don't typically enjoy them, I always have to force myself to finish them, and I usually just end up giving up before I finish altogether. This book started out similar - it took me a really long time to get invested in the story and characters, I read it very slowly, and I was pretty sure I was going to hate it by page 50. Fortunately for me, though, I ended up enjoying the story when I (sadly) forced myself to continue on. (Thanks, Classics Challenge, for that little push!) I am SO proud of myself for getting through this and actually feeling like I somewhat enjoyed the book. Someone described this book to me as almost like a soap opera (can't remember who...), and that individual is completely right. There is so much drama in here... it's crazy. I definitely felt attached to the characters, even with all their unpredictable drama, and I'm glad that I finished the book and got to appreciate it. I can't really say that this is one of my favorites, but it is a pretty decent book, and I can see why it is dubbed a "classic".
    ...more info
  • Scorching Yet Compelling, Wild Yet Logical Prose
    I'll never forget a one-on-one extended conversation I once had with the celebrated, brilliant albeit tortured poet, John Berryman (and his bottle of Jack). What remains with me from that broadly inclusive and allusive ramble about all things literary (and more) was his singling out Emily Bronte's "Wuthering Heights" as the one novel capable of exerting a hold on the reader that all but defied his analysis and description. I didn't fully grasp his drift at the time, but after at least two additional readings of this perversely powerful, heaven-denying yet time-defying testimony to indestructible passion that is neither quite "of" nor "out of" this world, I now number myself among those who, like Berryman, are in the novel's grip.

    The uniqueness of the story is not the subject matter (as Charlotte implied in her critical assessment of her sister's novel--though I would grant that scenes of puppy hanging and necrophilia are not common Victorian fare). The novel owes its special place to the discourse--the language as employed by Emily Bronte to express the feelings of Catherine and Heathcliff--that moreover insures familiar emotions strike the reader in unfamiliar ways, altering and destabilizing conventional understandings before taking root in consciousness. Bronte's syntax and diction literally make the reader "work," but the difficulty is essential to her dual purpose: 1. to enable us to experience first-hand some of the same reeling and disorientation felt by the characters who ride the whirlwind of their fatal but not deadly passion; 2. to convey the supreme difficulty (impossibility, for most of us) and accomplishment of representing in words a passion that is equal parts natural and unnatural.

    The key to reading this novel for maximum impact and lasting appreciation is to struggle with, but not give up on, the novel's vital meanings, which are in the passages containing some combination of the following: paradox and irony, sudden reversals, antithesis, oxymoronic juxtaposition, natural images functioning as "objective correlatives," mind-blowing similes and metaphors pushed to extravagant literary "conceits." Above all, the reader needs to be alert to Bronte's transpositions of references and referents, her displacements of "signifiers" and the "signifieds" with which they are normally paired.

    The foregoing might seem to be insufficient incentive to read this remarkable novel were it not for the surprising degree of "precision" that characterizes Bronte's eros-fueled discourse about love. Just as the "monstrous," elemental, and hate-spewing Heathcliff is at the same time an attentive, responsive observer (catching Hindley and later Catherine in mid-flight, a fractional second before either hits the floor) and a careful, even long-range planner, taking pains to stay within the "law," Bronte's language attends to and remains true to its own laws, adhering to a meticulous and consistent logic that rewards the reader who has the patience to stay with its lurching, unpredictable course. Once you've decoded a statement such as Heathcliff's that he can "never forgive Catherine's murderer"--with Catherine herself being the "murderer" he has in mind--the logic of Bronte's lexicon along with her unfailing responsibility to the reader become more evident, making possible a relationship between reader and text rivaling that of Cathy and Heathcliff.

    (Concerning this Penguin edition, I could do without its return to the original published format of two volumes along with two chapter 1's, two chapter 2's, etc. The unified, organic structure of the novel is better served by an edition that avoids such a distracting bifurcation of the narrative. There's only one potential benefit that I can see: if you read the first volume only, the William Wyler-directed Hollywood classic starring Olivier and Oberon works much better.)...more info
  • Wonderful
    This is truly a wonderful book. I can't put it any plainer, and recommend it for anyone. ...more info
  • Wuthering Heights
    A truly classic novel and a quick read- HOWEVER, some of the "local dialect" of one of it's characters is difficult to decipher and seems to be written phonetically!
    The rest of the characters are easily read and the book truly IS a classic!!!! I enjoyed it greatly.
    ...more info
  • excellent service and product
    I was very pleased with the book,"Wurthering Heights" and the service in sending it to me. THank you. ...more info
  • The dark and brooding tale of Cathy & Heathcliff
    What a great experience to finally reread this classic as an adult. Emily Bronte depicts a very gothic and depressing story of two star-crossed (but not terribly likeable) lovers, Cathy & Heathcliff, and the love between them that transcended the grave. Added to that a wonderful depiction of the dark English moors and the local characters with their strange dialects. This was also told in a very unusual style, like a tale within a tale within a tale, adding more layers and perspectives to the story.

    How unfortunate that one's upbringing can so affect a person that their grief and bitterness turn what could have been a fine young man into such a hateful and vengeful person as Heathcliff became. And fortunate that Cathy's daughter and Hareton could overcome their dark upbringing to bring a happier light onto the dark moors of England.

    I did not read this version of the book, but the Selected Works of the Bronte Sisters (Wordsworth Special Editions) (Wordsworth Special Editions), which did not have all the footnotes. I think I enjoyed that better as I wasn't constantly distracted by looking to the back for the notes and just allowed myself to become engrossed with the story. It's one book you have to read at least twice in your life -- of course in school as required reading and then again as an adult to add that perspective of age and experience in life so that one can more fully appreciate a such a classic tale. ...more info

 

 
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