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Ann Veronica, a modern love story Kindle Edition
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I immediately felt at home in the milieu of the novel. And though male myself, I completely identified with the young female protagonist, a college student in biology who leaves home to strike out on her own. In the process, she finds out about the ups and downs of "real life". The story is told almost exclusively from her point of view. Of course, the setting is now 100 years ago, but there was almost nothing in the novel that truly dated it. All the characters had motivations and acted in ways that seem completely contemporary today. I became completely enthralled with Ann Veronica's life and adventures, even staying up late to finish the book. She became a real person to me.
In terms of this edition of the book, not only are there end notes explaining allusions and other points, but also there is a very useful glossary included which defines unusual words. Of course, there is also a helpful introduction by a contemporaty critic, as well as a preface Wells wrote to an edition of the book published in the 1920s.
I can easily see this novel being adapted for Masterpiece Theatre. With enough publicity, I think it could become a top seller again today. It is definitely a story for the ages.
One star because at least i got the correct story.
Not only was he an excellent science fiction author, but he wrote a lovely story about an extremely frustrated , repressed woman living in the frustrating and repressive Victorian Era!
The ending surprised and delighted me very much!
Ann Veronica is the youngest of a fairly well-to-do family. She’s not your typical turn-of-the-20th-century girl — she studies biology at a college (with her father’s permission) and enjoys talking about her intellectual interests with others. Her close friends are burgeoning suffragists, so she often joins their discussions about how women aren’t free to do what they want and how they’re caged up in society because men keep them imprisoned, basically. So, when her father literally locks her in her bedroom to prevent her from going to a ball, she runs away to the city to make it on her own. She quickly finds out that there’s not a great way for women to make a lot of money, and renting out an apartment in London actually costs quite a lot. Basically, she has to face harder truths than she realized were out there and more fully understands the plight of women because of her decision to not live under her father’s roof.
What I love about this story is how it covers everything and doesn’t sugarcoat anything. It gives a clear, honest look at exactly what the situation of women was for that time period — hardly any job prospects (and any available were drudgery for pennies), no respect, and no vote. Their lives were at the mercy of the men in their lives and they weren’t taught anything about how to survive or live in the world. Ann Veronica even gets herself into a misunderstanding with a man and it’s sad how much that particular “misunderstanding” can still be seen in today’s world. They talk as if they’re friends, and they go out to lunch together as friends, and then he locks her in a room with him “to make love” because of course she had to know that they weren’t really friends and he wanted her, and deserved her after all that he’d given her. (Isn’t it creepy how familiar that sounds?) HG Wells does a tremendous job in outlining the various difficulties that women faced when they fought for equal rights and equal opportunities in London and really hits, if not all, then at least most of the points.
The first half was wonderful, but it does start to drag a bit as the book goes on. I think the first half of the book is perfect and it would have been 5 stars if it had continued in that vein, but then Ann Veronica falls in love and the whole story sort of starts to fall apart and get into themes that don’t make sense for where the book started. Alas. Basically, I would recommend this to anyone who has an interest in feminism, its roots, or even how it was viewed during this time. I was blown away by how insightful this story was and a little saddened by how true those themes remain. If not a great story, it’s interesting to see the thoughts and themes of feminism from a male author born in the 19th century.
Ann Veronica "Vee" asks the question "why can't a woman be like a man" and sets out to find out why. She discovers all sorts of men, some stuffy and some devious. She may one day stumble over the perfect man. She tries to be independent and is thwarted at every turn; that is until she realizes there are better things to do than just compete.
We get to grow with Vee and go through several long dissertations, Ayn Rand style, over politics freedom, love, equality, and whatnot. All the talk loses its way and with dumb luck returns to the story. We are treated to a travelogue and scratch ourselves with a long talk about the prison dingies. Just as it, starts to get interest the story stops dead in the middle of a thought.
The story is ok and some of the subjects brought up are still relevant today. However, if you look a little closer the story as with much fiction is just a venue to express H.G's concepts of free love.
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Ann Veronica "Vee" asks the question "why can't a woman be like a man" and sets out to find out why.Read more