Wives and Daughters (Penguin Classics)

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9780140434781: Wives and Daughters (Penguin Classics)

Elizabeth Gaskell's Wives and Daughters is a story of romance, scandal and intrigue within the confines of a watchful, gossiping English village during the early nineteenth century. This Penguin Classics edition is edited with an introduction and notes by Pam Morris.

When seventeen-year-old Molly Gibson's widowed father remarries, her life is turned upside down by the arrival of her vain, manipulative stepfather. She also acquires an intriguing new stepsister, Cynthia, glamorous, sophisticated and irresistible to every man she meets. The two girls begin to confide in one another and Molly soon finds herself a go-between in Cynthia's love affairs - but in doing so risks losing both her own reputation and the man she secretly loves. Set in English society before the 1832 Reform Bill, Elizabeth Gaskell's last novel - considered to be her finest - demonstrates an intelligent and compassionate understanding of human relationships, and offers a witty, ironic critique of mid-Victorian society.

This text is based on the 1866 Cornhill Magazine version of the novel. It also includes notes on textual variants between this edition and the original manuscript, a note on the story's ending and an introduction discussing the novel's challenging investigation of themes of Englishness, Darwinism and masculine authority.

Elizabeth Gaskell (1810-65) was born in London, but grew up in the north of England in the village of Knutsford. In 1832 she married the Reverend William Gaskell and had four daughters, and one son who died in infancy. Her first novel, Mary Barton, was published in 1848, winning the attention of Charles Dickens, and most of her later work was published in his journals, including Cranford (1853), serialised in Dickens's Household Words. She was also a lifelong friend of Charlotte Brontë, whose biography she wrote.

If you enjoyed Wives and Daughters, you might like Thomas Hardy's The Return of the Native, also available in Penguin Classics.

'No nineteenth-century novel contains a more devastating rejection than this of the Victorian male assumption of moral authority'

Pam Morris

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Product Description:

Paperback. Pub Date :1996-07-01 Pages: 720 Language: English Publisher: Penguin Books Set in English society before the 1832 Reform Bill. Wives and Daughters centres on the story of youthful Molly Gibson. brought up from childhood by her father. When he remarries a new stepsister. Cynthia. enters Mollys quiet life. Loveable but worldly and troubling. Cynthias arrival alters Mollys daily life. The narrative traces the development of the two girls into womanhood within the gossiping and watchful society of Hollingford. Wives and Daughters is far more than a nostalgic evocation of village life; it offers an ironic critique of mid-Victorian society.

Review:

Wives and Daughters is set in the mid-19th century in the small village of Hollingford, in rural England. The Industrial Revolution hasn't yet thrown the country into turmoil, and the railway is just beginning to cut a swathe through the land. It sounds old-fashioned, (and there are themes in the novel which date it) but Gaskell's witty, warm tale of love and longing is surprisingly contemporary. Much of the fun in Wives And Daughters comes from Gaskell's sprightly characterisation, and willful insistence on the unconventional hero and heroine, both worthy, principled, and a little tedious. Molly Gibson, the doctor's daughter, is intelligent, spiritedly dutiful and given to much silent endurance. The object of her affections is Squire Hamley's younger son "Good Roger! Kind Roger! Dear Roger!", a sort of duller Darwin. The course of true love doesn't run smooth, thanks in the main, to the scintillating Cynthia, Molly's step sister. Cynthia is a glorious creation, willful, sinful and incredibly attractive, who, with her French education, strolls through the novel with "the free stately step of some wild animal of the forest"--moving almost, as it were, to the continual sound of music. Cynthia's mother, the epitome of snobbery and self-deceit, whose "words were ready-made clothes, and never fitted individual thoughts" adds to the piquant entertainment. The novel revolves around the trails and tribulations, the questionable reputations of the inhabitants of Hollingford. It was Gaskell's last and most mature work, powerful and engrossing in structure and unfinished. As her daughter reported, in January 1866, Elizabeth Gaskell died: "quite suddenly, without a moments warning, in the midst of a sentence" leaving the last chapter incomplete. Wives and Daughters is just a few pages short of an all embracing happy ending. --Eithne Farry

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Revised ed.. 194 x 130 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Elizabeth Gaskell s Wives and Daughters is a story of romance, scandal and intrigue within the confines of a watchful, gossiping English village during the early nineteenth century. This Penguin Classics edition is edited with an introduction and notes by Pam Morris. When seventeen-year-old Molly Gibson s widowed father remarries, her life is turned upside down by the arrival of her vain, manipulative stepfather. She also acquires an intriguing new stepsister, Cynthia, glamorous, sophisticated and irresistible to every man she meets. The two girls begin to confide in one another and Molly soon finds herself a go-between in Cynthia s love affairs - but in doing so risks losing both her own reputation and the man she secretly loves. Set in English society before the 1832 Reform Bill, Elizabeth Gaskell s last novel - considered to be her finest - demonstrates an intelligent and compassionate understanding of human relationships, and offers a witty, ironic critique of mid-Victorian society. This text is based on the 1866 Cornhill Magazine version of the novel. It also includes notes on textual variants between this edition and the original manuscript, a note on the story s ending and an introduction discussing the novel s challenging investigation of themes of Englishness, Darwinism and masculine authority. Elizabeth Gaskell (1810-65) was born in London, but grew up in the north of England in the village of Knutsford. In 1832 she married the Reverend William Gaskell and had four daughters, and one son who died in infancy. Her first novel, Mary Barton, was published in 1848, winning the attention of Charles Dickens, and most of her later work was published in his journals, including Cranford (1853), serialised in Dickens s Household Words. She was also a lifelong friend of Charlotte Bronte, whose biography she wrote. If you enjoyed Wives and Daughters, you might like Thomas Hardy s The Return of the Native, also available in Penguin Classics. No nineteenth-century novel contains a more devastating rejection than this of the Victorian male assumption of moral authority Pam Morris. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780140434781

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2011. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Revised ed.. 194 x 130 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Elizabeth Gaskell s Wives and Daughters is a story of romance, scandal and intrigue within the confines of a watchful, gossiping English village during the early nineteenth century. This Penguin Classics edition is edited with an introduction and notes by Pam Morris. When seventeen-year-old Molly Gibson s widowed father remarries, her life is turned upside down by the arrival of her vain, manipulative stepfather. She also acquires an intriguing new stepsister, Cynthia, glamorous, sophisticated and irresistible to every man she meets. The two girls begin to confide in one another and Molly soon finds herself a go-between in Cynthia s love affairs - but in doing so risks losing both her own reputation and the man she secretly loves. Set in English society before the 1832 Reform Bill, Elizabeth Gaskell s last novel - considered to be her finest - demonstrates an intelligent and compassionate understanding of human relationships, and offers a witty, ironic critique of mid-Victorian society. This text is based on the 1866 Cornhill Magazine version of the novel. It also includes notes on textual variants between this edition and the original manuscript, a note on the story s ending and an introduction discussing the novel s challenging investigation of themes of Englishness, Darwinism and masculine authority. Elizabeth Gaskell (1810-65) was born in London, but grew up in the north of England in the village of Knutsford. In 1832 she married the Reverend William Gaskell and had four daughters, and one son who died in infancy. Her first novel, Mary Barton, was published in 1848, winning the attention of Charles Dickens, and most of her later work was published in his journals, including Cranford (1853), serialised in Dickens s Household Words. She was also a lifelong friend of Charlotte Bronte, whose biography she wrote. If you enjoyed Wives and Daughters, you might like Thomas Hardy s The Return of the Native, also available in Penguin Classics. No nineteenth-century novel contains a more devastating rejection than this of the Victorian male assumption of moral authority Pam Morris. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780140434781

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Book Description Penguin Classics. Book Condition: New. 1997. Reprint. Paperback. When seventeen-year-old Molly Gibson's widowed father remarries, her life is turned upside down by the arrival of her vain, manipulative stepfather. She also acquires an intriguing new stepsister, Cynthia, glamorous, sophisticated and irresistible to every man she meets. Num Pages: 720 pages, facsimiles. BIC Classification: FC. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 196 x 130 x 31. Weight in Grams: 496. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780140434781

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