Book #48-The Rainbow by D. H. Lawrence

This was not a read I was looking forward to and unfortunately, my suppositions were on target.  Lawrence is known for his verbosity and he certainly did not stray from that in The Rainbow.  Redundant use of words, some even within the same sentence is another flaw he is known for, and here again, he was on his mark.  I think both were most definitely intended by the author, but I found both to be quite distracting.

Set in rural England, The Rainbow introduces the Brangwen family and takes the reader from the mid-1800’s through the early 1900’s as three generations marry, have families and struggle with the inevitable questions of life in general.

We meet Tom Brangwen as a self-centered young man who chides his cross-eyed housekeeper, Tilly as he searches for a wife.  Not enough substance to like or dislike this character, in my humble opinion.

The Polish widow, Lydia Lensky, five years Tom’s senior, becomes his wife.  She and her daughter, Anna settle in to rural life without much fuss.  After Lydia has a son, Anna and her stepfather Tom grow closer together.  Lydia seems to be a character of great depth, however, we never get a close enough  look which is rather unfortunate as what is revealed of her is intriguing.

The central character is Anna Lensky, whom we see from the age of four through young womanhood.  Here is a character we do get to see into quite thoroughly, but what we see is a spoiled and totally self-absorbed woman who never seems to consider anyone’s feelings but her own.  As a young teacher, she resorts to thrashing her unruly students, she sends her young love, Anton Skrebensky away, she tires of her female lover and upon Anton’s return, she vacillates between seduction and indifference.  Anna is not a likable character at all.

I was hoping Mr. Lawrence would grow on me, but that has not yet happened.  Were I to be in the company of this esteemed author, I would attempt to avoid discussing my thoughts on his works.

My rating for The Rainbow is a 6 out of 10.

To see the entire list,  visit Modern Library’s 100 Best Novels.

Please share your own reviews or  comments by using the link below.

Next up, (egads) D. H. Lawrence’s Women in Love

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2 Comments

Filed under The Rainbow

2 responses to “Book #48-The Rainbow by D. H. Lawrence

  1. I’ve only read Lady Chatterley’s Lover, at first assuming that it was his best work because of it’s popularity. I appreciated what Lawrence was trying to do with it but didn’t enjoy the experience of reading it so much. I was consoled by other reviews and comments, however, stating that it wasn’t his best work – it’s popularity is mainly due to the trial surrounding it. Like you, I hold out hope that he’ll grow on me. But for now I approach his work with some skepticism.

    • vsudia

      I’m almost through Women in Love and since it is a continuation of The Rainbow, I am not enjoying this one either. I’ve concluded that his writing just does not appeal to me, although the writing is quite good. Perhaps you’ll have a different experience.

      Enjoyed your blog so I’ve added it to the Blogs I Digg…happy reading. I don’t enjoy baking, but I just may try the Battenberg cake.

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