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The Return of the Native (Penguin Classics) Paperback – August 1, 1999
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Four girls on a trip to Paris suddenly find themselves in a high-stakes game of Truth or Dare that spirals out of control. Learn More
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--D. H. Lawrence
From the Publisher
Top Customer Reviews
Rickman, in his limited interviews, has repeatedly referred to himself as an instrument. In this product, the only part of that instrument he could utilize was his voice. It is more than enough: the pictures and action spring vividly to life. Listening to his performance is sheer joy, and it rapidly makes you realize how little his capability has been tapped by film - where the whole "instrument" is utilized.
I would give this product the highest recommendation.
"The Return of the Native" is a compelling and beautifully written story. I especially like the way Hardy makes Egdon Heath itself as much a character in the story as the human denizens of the area, breathing life into it through his wonderful word pictures and his special talent for creating moods. Hardy's vivid descriptions and excellent character development make this an enchanting adventure.
Add to this the velvet-smooth voice of Rickman, and you have a treat for the imagination and the ears.
Rickman gives each of the characters his (or her) own separate voice, and manages to do so without forgetting how each should sound. How he kept it straight, I'll never know (I, myself, record books on tape for an educational company and know how complicated that can be!)...what with the many inhabitants of Egdon Heath he had to work with...but, he did. Rickman also actually sang the songs from the book (and not badly, either), adding another dimension.
"The Return of the Native" (unabridged) is a must for anyone who loves good literature on tape, and for anyone who is a fan of Alan Rickman. This is a stunning production and well worth the investment!
In Egdon Heath, Thomas Hardy creates an otherworld consisting of the elements earth, wind, fire, and water, populated by a witch condemned by a pious woman's spell, a Christian ruled by pagan beliefs, an assortment of other odd characters, and the native of the title whose return precipitates a series of tragic events.
The Return of the Native is centered around Eustacia Vye, a beautiful outsider wrenched from the society she craves by orphanhood and exiled to live on Egdon Heath with her maternal grandfather. Spoiled, vain, fickle, and selfish, Eustacia is not a sympathetic heroine. Although she claims to belong to Damon Wildeve ("body and soul" in one uncensored version), she really belongs to whomever can grant her what she desires and, in her mind, deserves. While Wildeve is a step above the local rabble, Eustacia can never fully commit herself to him. Each time she considers it, she is held back by the thought that even he lacks something and that surely she can do better. "He's not great enough for me to give myself to-he does not suffice for my desire! . . . If he had been a Saul or a Bonaparte-ah! But to break my marriage vow for him-it is too poor a luxury!"
In another place, like the Paris Eustacia longs for, she would have become a mistress or a courtesan-the consort of a powerful man or men. On Egdon Heath, however, there are neither powerful men nor courtesans. There is only Damon, an equally fickle young man who hotly desires that which he cannot have-sometimes Eustacia, sometimes the naïve Thomasin Yeobright. To complicate matters, Thomasin's cousin Clym returns from Paris, where he has a financially rewarding and spiritually stifling career.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very pleased with purchase. Took a while to find the audiobook as first was broken, but you found a copy for me, and I am very pleased with your efforts to do so. Read morePublished 14 days ago by Amazon Customer
The reason I could only give this book two stars was because of the purple prose. Good God, the purple prose! Read morePublished 1 month ago by M
I enjoyed this novel as much as I did in high school. Sometimes the Victorian language is a bit flowery, but I always loved the story. Read morePublished 2 months ago by J. W. B.
the classics are called classic for books such as this excellent so descriptivePublished 3 months ago by AlohaB
I wanted Alan Rickman's beautiful voice! Be careful ordering this. I ordered the Kindle book and upgraded to audio version since I don't want an Audible account. Read morePublished 5 months ago by D. Rivera
Oy, Thomas Hardy, he is so, so dark. In The Return of the Native, I thought the subplots needed more development. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Eileen Auerbach
Alan Rickman is such an entertaining narrator. He sings. Alan voices the different characters including women. This is a romance novel.Published 6 months ago by Sci Fi Lover
The Return of the Native is one of Hardys best, in my opinion. The details he lovingly uses to describe the physical environment combined with his sharp observations of human... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Karen Seaborn
Thomas Hardy is not well known among most American readers; however, he represents the best of British literary tradition in the 19th century. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Carfer