Monday, June 13, 2011

Emily Bronte - Wuthering Heights IV

"Letters formed, words flowed, as Emily Brontë moved the ink across the pages. In 1847, around the age of 28, Emily saw the culmination of her writing, Wuthering Heights, published. Emily also heard it bashed, criticized, and spoken of as worthless in her life time. As the year 1848 rolled around Emily perished from the earth."

"If one wants to be bored into tears, one should invest in this unreasonably terrible. The only thing I liked about it was the fact that it cured my sleep deprivation problem. At the end of the book, nothing has happened other than a bunch of funerals. I may be young and stupid but I believe that I am advanced enough to know the work of a inept writer. You can cast my opinion away because my young age, but from 'See Spot Run' to 'King James' Bible' there has never been a book so gargantuously horrible."

"Wuthering Heights is, frankly, a disaster of a novel. Examining it from a technical point of view, the narration is stilted and poor, the characters are flat, the writing is childish, and it's much too bloated. The entire story could have been summed up into about forty pages or less, and I think it would have been more "passionate" and surely much more believable if Emily Brontë had written the book in third person, not first person.

Mr. Lockwood begins narrating the story, which is perfectly fine. I'd thought it would be a normal first-person narrative, until I discovered that the true narrator is Nelly Dean. In everyday speech, or even in telling a lengthy story (as Nelly is), no one actually speaks like they're writing a book (''Yes,' she said, looking at me.'). People speak like, well, people. They stammer and stumble and interrupt themselves, especially when they're trying to narrate a story.
Heathcliff is supposedly the main character, but he is anything but a hero..."

"Glad Bronte died before she could write any more trash!
What a waste of time, precious time in my life that I will never be able to get back. The only good part was the end when I tossed the book into the fireplace and watched it burn."

"That brings us to the novel's problems. The true highlight of a novel is not its story, but rather its hidden significance, and while Wuthering Heights does bring out the extreme emotions that can be associated with love (i.e. passion, jealousy, spite), it does so in such a way that kills any male reader. It's true -for some reason, the ladies who read this book tend to like it much more than the guys.

Perhaps the reason for this is the fact that the novel, with all deep and meaningful thoughts written in, reads like a victorian era after school special. Catherine totally had a crush on Heathcliff, and Heatcliff liked him back, but Catherine started hanging out with the wrong crowd -Isabella and Edgar. After a while Catherine just didn't want to hang out with Heathcliff, and one night she got so out of hand that she totally made out with Edgar! Heathcliff finds out and totally gets made, but he moved to another school for a year so it was okay then. Besides, his brother was mean to him. The next year he totally surprised everyone when he came back! Catherine was soooo regretful that she made out with Edgar, and she wanted Heathcliff back -but Isabella had a crush on him too! They totally got in a cat fight that day, saying how much they both hate Heathcliff. The problem was that Heathcliff was soooo made at Catherine (still) but had a crush on her (still) so he totally made out with Isabella! Then Isabella dies, then Edgar dies, then Heathcliff brother dies, then a few people get married until Heathcliff finally bites the dust.

You're probably thinking that I have blown the story out of proportion, but the sad truth is that I haven't. In actuality, Heathcliff and Catherine do fall in love, but they never admit it to each other -they always bicker and argue and yell about how much they hate each other until Catherine dies. Just like how middle school kids will talk about how much they like so-and-so, but not to that individul. In actuality, Catherine does marry Edgar, Heathcliff does run away, and on his return Isabella does admit that she has fallen in love with him, Heathcliff does marry Isabella for revenge, and the rest of the story is then about people dying and Catherine's daughter Catherine and how she was forced to marry Heathcliff's son so that Heathcliff would get extra land when his kid died.

Touching love story, isn't it?

While some might call it a wild romance and a true testament to our inability to control the strongest of human emotion, I find that the love story is very elementary (on the account that it really does read like an afterschool special) and at the same time blown up -almost like Emily Bronte was a love-starved victorian era woman longing for a romance in her life (which she was) and the rest of the story was just a simple story where people are mean to each other and then die.

Sorry Emily Bronte!"

i hated this book. It was made up of stupid people with stupid problems. I hated the book. Didnt understand, didnt want to.... I hated the book. BURN IT!"

"I am sorry for even hearing about this novel and i am very upset that it was required reading in my high school. It is horrible out-of-date novel about a guy named Heathcliff, and that's where i fell asleep. The description of things in this book take up 8 lines at a time and are unecessary! I don't reccomend this book to anyone!"

"Dear Bronte, if you're going to write a book, add more to the characters and don't just state the obvious. Also, why did you include that dream about Cathy Linton in the beginning and not have any more supernatural stuff later? You should involve the supernatural and not just mention or include it. One star is generous"

"I loved the book American Psycho. It was also about selfish, nasty, arrogant people but Ellis made the world so vibrant and the characters so much fun that I couldn't help but root for them even when they were stuffing rats in womens' private parts and sewing them shut to let themselves chew their way out. I believe that if Bronte attempted to write about the ugliness of humanity, she failed. it is so easy to write about ugliness. Just open the newspaper and read about the latest rapist or killer or whatever."

"Wow! I read tons of books, love classic literature, have eclectic tastes and I am a very passionate person...I can definitely get into the dark, forbidden romance thing & have definitley felt love sweet love!! I actually, usually enjoy... to absolutely love what I read......I have to say that This was I think my least favorite, the worst book I have ever read....probably in my life. Strange how things hit us just a certain way. I found all of the characters despicable, and love story? where was it? I felt nothing for or between any of these sickos. I could go on in detail about why I feel this way but basically it was just Pathetic...."

"Some great works of literature are best lost to posterity and this one may head the list. Yet, we must read it if we are in an English Literature survey course.

It is ponderous going... a classic of dreary proportions, encumbered by a depressing plot, set in dismal surroundings and peopled by dysfunctional characters.

However, many other readers, many teachers and professors, many literature critics, genuinely love this book.

- Perhaps it appeals to their current mood, or it speaks to having shared, in some way, the experience of one or another of the characters?

- Perhaps they have loved long and deeply and found their love unfulfilled? Then Heathcliff speaks to their hearts.

- Perhaps they have moved beyond a deeply felt love, for reasons that they cannot fully express or understand, all the while, still keeping deep in some hidden recess of their psyche, that love that will remain first or best or purest? We can see, then, why that reader might be drawn to identify with Cathy.

A sad aspect of the book, however, is that it seems so hopeless, so dark, so fatalistic, so depressing. An over identification with these characters might have an adverse effect on a susceptible reader.

The reality is, if you are more or less happy in who you are and who the other beloved people in your life may be, then you will probably find very few connecting points with these benighted main characters."

"The love-struck heroine/antagonist Catherine Earnshaw declares at one point that 'Nelly, I am Heathcliff!' While intended to be a moving statement, modern psychology student would be more likely to call it stage one acute paranoia. Indeed, this particular educational slave had to struggle through only six chapters of poorly created characters, morose settings, and a plot that seemed more thrown-together than created, before literally guessing his/her way to passing every exam.

Back to Ms. Bronte's plot devices. This novel is almost like watching a child play with dolls while talking aloud. Listen to your young daughters; 'Suzie came home, and did this.' A thoughtful pause will follow, and then something else will hapen to Suzie. Then something else. Whatever comes to mind will happen, regardless of whether it makes good storytelling or not. The novel takes the same approach, with a plotline that could only be deemed a line in Lovecraftian geometry.

All in all, Wuthering Heights demonstrates fluid and powerful use of the English language . . . but isn't that the purpose of poetry?"

"Unfortunately, the writing is so convoluted and verbose that you'd need a machete to ... your way through it. And '...' is an accurate verb; typically whole paragraphs and pages are filled with needless complications so that it's more like deciphering a code than reading a story. The sheer amount of effort that it takes to get very little payoff quickly breeds apathy. After a while, I didn't care who Catherine married or who was narrating or anything else.

The book has some other flaws (most noticeably the use of death as a cheap plot device) but the writing's really what sinks the book."

"I'd also like to know where the romance is. Since everybody in this book seems to hate everybody else, with the notable exception of the uncouth monster, Heathcliff, and the spoiled-rotten, obnoxious Catherine, I can't fathom where that might lie. Am I too dense to understand? Or has the literary world been tricking us for 150 years, convincing the sheep of the world to follow along in praise of this 'romantic' classic?

I think I would rather have my fingernails pulled out forcefully, one at a time, than finish reading this book. I'm halfway through, and life is short. Am I really willing to spend that much more of my short time here on earth torturing myself just for the satisfaction of knowing I actually read the dreadful thing? I think not.

I also think my foray into the classics has ended right here. I'm off to read some Robert Parker or Janet Evanovich. Maybe even some Jackie Collins. Anything to cleanse my palate of the terrible aftertaste of Heathcliff and Catherine."

"I think everyone who enjoys this book is a woman. I don't mean to sound sexist, it's just true. I've never met a woman who didn't love this book, And I've never met a man who liked it. I hated it. I won't say it was a bad book, because it's a classic, and the most you're allowed to say about a classic is that you didn't enjoy it, which I didn't. Sorry to say, this is the FIRST classic novel I've ever read that I didn't enjoy. And I've read a lot."

"If one did not know it was the famed 'Wuthering Heights'- and read this book, I'm sure he would have thought it was a script for morning soap opera. Not only the story is highly unbelievable, it's way to melodramatic and disturbing. It's a good writing on Bronte's part but it is not a good story. If the book had not been written in such a descriptive and well-fabricated style, this would have been considered as a trashy women's romantic novel. You can tell it's written by a woman after all."

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