- Paperback: 864 pages
- Publisher: Harper Perennial (November 17, 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062356143
- ISBN-13: 978-0062356147
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.4 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 33 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #52,077 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Middlemarch Paperback – Deckle Edge, November 17, 2015
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""Middlemarch," the magnificent book which with all its imperfections is one of the few English novels written for grown-up people."
"The most profound, wise and absorbing of English novels . . . and, above all, truthful and forgiving about human behaviour."
"No Victorian novel approaches "Middlemarch" in its width of reference, its intellectual power, or the imperturbable spaciousness of its narrative...I doubt if any Victorian novelist has as much to teach the modern novelists as George Eliot...No writer has ever represented the ambiguities of moral choice so fully."
--V. S. Pritchett
"Middlemarch is probably the greatest English novel."
"It is possible to argue that Middlemarch is the greatest English novel."
--A. S. Byatt
"Certainly the greatest [English] novel."
From the Back Cover
An enduring triumph of moral and psychological insight, George Eliot’s classic novel traces the lives of four residents of a fictional English town rocked by the changes of a modernizing world.
Dorothea Brooke married Edward Casaubon—a clergyman and scholar some years her senior—naively hoping their union would be a true meeting of the minds. Trapped in a lonely marriage to a tyrannical man, she finds companionship with Edward’s cousin, but her overtures risk her spotless reputation and jeopardize her future.
Young doctor Tertius Lydgate comes to Middlemarch full of progressive ideas, eager to volunteer his skill at the local hospital. Through his connections there he meets the mayor’s beautiful daughter, Rosamond Vincy, and marries her, only to face financial ruin at the hands of her materialism and overwhelming vanity.
Rosamond’s brother, Fred, is destined for the Church to improve his family’s class standing, but his childhood sweetheart, Mary Garth, refuses to marry him unless he pursues a more suitable career. Forced by fate into uncertain financial circumstances, Fred must question his choices and desires if he hopes to earn Mary’s respect.
God-fearing and esteemed, Nicholas Bulstrode is a good man and trustworthy banker—or so it appears until an old enemy comes to town, intent on revealing Bulstrode’s shady past dealings. Terrified of being exposed as a hypocrite, he takes matters into his own hands, each desperate act spiraling him further into disgrace and corruption.
A masterwork of fiction, Middlemarch traces these four lives in a plot that illuminates the social fabric of mid-nineteenth-century England. Looming above the landscape of Victorian literature, Eliot’s beloved novel explores the perennial struggle between individual and society, integrity and temptation, and is as timely today as when it was first published.
Top customer reviews
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The Victorian prose style and historical references aside, MIDDLEMARCH, at its core, seemed to me a perfectly modern novel. The predominant themes of marriage, gossip and rumor, debt and finances, chance and self determination, prejudice, pride, and conformity run through the novel, as they do our lives today. Reading MIDDLEMARCH, one realizes how little we've changed over the last 146 years.
Dorothea and Casaubon marry for the wrong reasons, trapped in misery. Banker Nicholas Bulstrode's past deeds return with a mysterious man with catastrophic consequences. Calumny ruins physician Lydgate, even as his wife, Rosamond, schemes behind his back to retain her lavish style. Will Ladislaw wants what he cannot have. And so it goes for the inhabitants of MIDDLEMARCH amid the larger events of the time, cholera epidemics, political and religious upheavals, and the rapid English industrialization.
Some might think this an unlikely comparison, but MIDDLEMARCH is much like Joyce's ULYSSES in the manner in which Eliot, like Joyce, gives us a novel of epic proportions, not around kings and heroes, but around those of the provincial life, the ordinary folk, something that is echoed in the final line of the novel, in Eliot's brief Finale:
“... for the growing good of the world is partly dependent on unhistoric acts; and that things are not so ill with you and me as they might have been, is half owing to the number who lived faithfully a hidden life, and rest in unvisited tombs.” 
Unlike most novels, there is no single protagonist: MIDDLEMARCH itself, the communal web, holds everyone fast, in all their varied interconnectedness.
I won't pretend that it’s a quick read. It's not. But I enjoyed MIDDLEMARCH so much more than I expected I would. Five out of five stars.
Most recent customer reviews
The cover is beautifully simplistic and it came in perfect condition. I am truly excited to begin reading this book.Read more