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The Return of the Native (Oxford World's Classics) Paperback – July 26, 2009

4.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Thomas Hardy (1840 1928), enduring author of the twentieth century, wrote the classics Jude the Obscure, Tess of the d'Urbervilles, Far from the Madding Crowd, The Return of the Native, The Mayor of Casterbridge, and many other works.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 488 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; Reissue edition (July 26, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199537046
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199537044
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 1 x 5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #110,226 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
There was a time, before iPods, Walkmans, TV, radio, record players, in which workers (usually women) that were assigned to long hours of menial labor would assign one amongst them to read a book to the rest. The Return of the Native, Thomas Hardy's sixth novel, would be a terrific choice for such a reading group. Few in the 21st century have the leisure, or the inclination, to delve into a tale in which many pages might be given to the description of a natural scene, or to the intricate development of the personalities of the main characters of this book. But if there were a modern reader that either had, or made, time to read this book at the deliberate and careful pace that is required to experience its depth and richness, that reader would be richly rewarded. As was I.

Thomas Hardy, better known for Tess of the D'Urbervilles, was one of the most influential of the English authors of the 1800's. Both D.H. Lawrence and Virginia Woolf pay him homage and cite him as a source of their inspiration. His stories can be explored on two levels, both levels very accessible to the moderately experienced reader, neither level involving a journey into the deep complexities of books such as Pinchon's Gravity's Rainbow or James Joyce's Ulysses.

The first level of The Return of the Native: it's simply a wonderful tale. For the price of a tiny bit of patience, as Hardy's narrative begins to unfold the reader receives a rich story involving integrity, duplicity, humor, passion, selfishness and selflessness, nobility and narcissism, as well as the consequences of impetuous action and the rewards of patient persistence. As a well told story it stands on its own and stands proudly, with or without the embellishment of scholarly opinion or critical review.
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Format: Paperback
Here's how Hardy conveys this thought:
She saw the dying fire as she entered in the early evening.

To convey that sentence he writes on p.52:
"the red coals of the perishing fire greeted her like living eyes in the corpse of day"
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love Thomas Hardy, and this novel is no exception. Beautifully written, classic Hardy.
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By S. Nelson on December 29, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Beautiful!
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