Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Wuthering HeightsEmily Bronte’s tale was published in 1847, a year before her premature death and immortalized on-screen in 1939 by Laurence Olivier (swoon, swoon).

Unrequited love turns an already bitter man into one whose life is lived only by his vindictiveness.  Every word uttered , as though a jagged piece of glass slicing slowly and seemingly with pleasure, cuts at the soul of those who cross him.

Mr. Lockwood, a traveler, learns much of his sullen landlord, Heathcliff,  from a housekeeper, who fascinates him with the family history and which he later captures into his diary.

As a young boy, Heathcliff, was an orphan taken into Wuthering Heights by Mr. Earnshaw, the former owner. He falls in love with his daughter, Catherine, but she aspires to wed someone with money.  After Mr. Earnshaw dies, his resentful son, Hindley, makes Heathcliff a servant and treats him very poorly.  His eventual rejection by Catherine and his ill-treatment by Hindley breed deep-seated resentment and he vows to exact his revenge and spends his life doing so.  Such a cruel, yet pitiful man.

Catherine Earnshaw Linton, the object of Heathcliff’s desires is an impulsive woman, yet adheres to societal expectations and marries a man she believes is good for her rather than the man she truly loves.  She won’t acknowledge her mistake and her lugubrious manner endures to her brief life and beyond.

Ellen Dean, the storyteller and housekeeper is intimately involved in the lives of those in Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange (Linton’s home).  Her judgment of others is not always on the mark and her duty seems to waver from time to time, yet she is protective and caring for those she deems worthy.  Being on her good side is well advisable.

Quotes:

I cannot express it; but surely you and everybody have a notion that there is, or should be, an existence of yours beyond you.  What were the use of my creation if I were entirely contained here?  My great miseries in this world have been Heathcliff’s miseries, and I watched and felt each from the beginning; my great thought in living is himself.  If all else perished, and he remained, I should still continue to be; and, if all else remained and he were annihilated, the Universe would turn to a mighty stranger.  I should not seem a part of it.  My love for Linton is like the foliage in the woods.  Time will change it, I’m well aware, as winter changes the trees–my love for Heathcliff resembles the eternal rocks beneath–a source of little visible delight, but necessary.  Nelly, I am Heathcliff–he’s always, always in my mind–not as a pleasure, any more that I am always a pleasure to myself–but, as my own being–so, don’t talk of our separation again–it is impractical…

You are welcome to torture me to death for your amusement, only allow me to amuse myself a little in the same style, and refrain from insult, as much as you are able.  Having levelled my palace, don’t erect a hovel and complacently admire your own charity in giving me that for a home.  

If he loved with all the powers of his puny being, he couldn’t love as much in eighty years as I could in a day.

I’m quite sure I’d enjoy chatting with Miss Emily. Her trying childhood surely provided much of the angst found in Wuthering Heights and I’d try to gain her trust in sharing some of those experiences.  Perhaps she’d recite some of her poetry and share her talents.

My rating for Wuthering Heights  is a 10 out of 10.

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

Next up, Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities…A Tale of Two Cities

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7 Comments

Filed under Wuthering Heights

7 responses to “Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

  1. Wuthering Heights is one of my favorite classics! It’s just so…dramatic 😀

  2. I’ve had this book hanging around for a while. Perhaps it’s time I settle down to reading it.

    I haven’t seen the Olivier version. I assume you would recommend it?

    • vsudia

      I didn’t expect to like it, but it was fantastic and I definitely recommend the book and the 1939 film version with Olivier.

  3. This is such a good book. I’ve written my thoughts on this too and it seems like we share a few opinions 🙂

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