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Villette Kindle Edition
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|Length: 741 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Top Customer Reviews
I read this because I enjoyed Jane Eyre and wanted a similar thing, but different. Villette didn't disappoint. While some plot patterns and character themes are similar to those used in Jane Eyre, Villette is a completely different thing. I had a blast!
Charlotte has full mastery of the language. No wonder her works are listed among the classics. She has no trouble expressing herself, and offers many insights into the human trials which are still relevant today. But what makes Villette truly fascinating is the protagonist, Lucy Snowe.
This is a romance story like no other. Lucy tries for human intimacy twice, loses both times. The odds are against her; her fate is written from the start. The ending isn't really ambiguous. The narrator states quite clearly what happened, then tells those who can't handle it to imagine their own happy ending, if they're so inclined.
When Dr. John was first introduced, I recognized him as a romantic interest and was pleasantly surprised that he was handsome. This is a step up, I thought, from Jane Eyre, where the narrator thought that handsome men are just too divine for her. Her self-esteem must be improving.
What can I say? At that point, I didn't yet realize that Lucy was born to suffer.
She resents that Graham can't see past her plain features to appreciate the treasure of her true inner self. But how could he appreciate what was denied him? She hid her true feelings from him, from the world, and from the readers. The narrator conceals facts - vital facts. Whenever she feels strongly, she becomes mute.
The story sometimes dragged and often got depressing, but it was all worth it for the ending. The narrator briefly outlines what happened to the main cast of the story - to her adversaries. They lived a long, prosperous life. She says not a word about Lucy, and that silence is loud and funeral. Lucy, who did her best to challenge fate, and this time the defeat was absolute. Once again, she becomes silent, this time to never speak again. Mutely she draws a black curtain over the ending.
Because, the writer wants us to know, some people are destined for happiness. And some people are just born to suffer. Better luck next life, Lucy Snowe.
The plot is often dark and sad, almost tragic. I agree with one reviewer who called Lucy Snowe the "anti-Austen" character. Most of the time I felt sorry for Lucy, even outraged for her. The book's untidy ending just continues the exasparation of those readers who are pulling for Lucy's happiness.
In the end the life of Lucy is not unlike real life for some: a mixture of hope and despair, happiness and sadness, blessing and cursing.
It's worth reading, but beware. It is certainly not a modern american story.
The book's plot is quite interesting: You follow Lucy Snowe though her teens into her early 20s. She's not a typical heroine: she's a plain looking, average woman - sort of the anti-Austen stereotype. Lucy doesn't even have self esteem, but manages to flee England and moves to the European mainland.
Being my first Bronte novel, it's wildly delicious. The characters are flawed, there's tragedy and particularly wonderful moments. It does make you wonder how much of the book is autobiographical, and you feel a sense of loss because the Brontes were taken from us too soon before they could complete more works. You're sucked into the isolation of Lucy and in a way, that's more interesting than the plot.
Other and more talented reviewers can give you a better review of Villette (Signet Classics) than I can. But this book is a worthy download, and will bring you into a unique literary world and make you adore the creativity of the Brontes.
The story follows a woman, Lucy Snowe, from England to France, where she becomes a teacher at a French school for girls. Strange circumstances bring back old friends from the past, and new friends show her that she is, in fact, worthy of love.
Although the prose is beautiful, this novel is full of a sort of dark and ominous feeling that is so affecting that it is almost impossible to take your eyes off the page.
This book is really worth reading.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
In many aspects, it is nothing like Jane Eyre other then the female protagonist must suffer--mentally, emotionally, psychologically.Read more
And, unless you are proficient in French, be sure to buy this version - the Penguin Classics edition -...Read more