Am I never to be rid of Wuthering Heights?!
Only yesterday I was talking to my mom of how much I hate this book. Three times I’ve tried reading it, and all three times I’ve despised the characters and the style and just put the book aside. Mom was understanding but not really sympathetic. She hates the book too, she said, but it is such a popular classic that any one claiming to read classics ought to read it. Especially if they, like me, want to teach some day.
I am not at all enthusiastic about this. But Geoff’s comment on the novel in one of my posts had me off hunting for pictures of the Yorkshire moors. He said:
Midst looking at pictures I came across a site whose writer had a lovely article on Wuthering Heights. She talks in detail about the moors and the effects it was bound to have on the writing of the Bronte sisters.
Several years ago, while in York on business, we had occasion to drive up to Edinburgh for some meetings. On the way up we enjoyed a breathtaking view of the moors, with beautiful patches of heather dotting the craggy hills.
That night, as we returned, the same scenery looked entirely different: eerie, foggy and forbidding.Clutching our new baby in my arms I peered through the window into the dark night and tried to imagine what it would be like to be raised in that wild, cold country. I thought of the four Bronte children, growing up in virtual isolation on those very moors, creating imaginary characters to fill their lonely existence, and it made sense that the characters they created would be as stormy and forbidding as the moors themselves. It was in this setting that quiet, serious Emily Bronte crafted the remarkable Wuthering Heights. Her sister Charlotte said of the book, “It is rustic all the way through. It is moorish, and wild, and knotty as a root of heath. Nor was it natural that it should be otherwise; the author being herself a native and nursling of the moors.”
All of this sounds so tempting. And yet I know what I’ve read of this novel and how much I dislike it. However, I’ll read it now till the end. Very very reluctantly I put Emily Bronte back on my to-read list, and I intend swallowing her like a nasty pill I just have to take.