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May 04, 2007

Wuthering Heights – A Rant

I recently saw a film version of the book with Juliette Binoche and Ralph Fiennes, because my opinion of the book is not a high one, and I thought that maybe if I saw a film version the directors divine vision of it (plus a couple of good actors) would improve mine. However, it only served to remind me how very much I despise the book.

I've always hated it, since I opened the first badly written page to the time I closed the overly tragic, cringeworthy last. Granted, the characters are interesting, the plot is complex, but does that make it any good? And, really, the cycle of names drives me mad. When I read a book I want to get the story, I don't want to be banging my head against a wall trying to sort out names and who everyone is the child of.

And the violence. I don't get it. Why do people like it? Heathcliff is a git, a twat, etc, etc. His character is not only frightening, but absurd. A wild spirit from the moors, indeed. Ptsh. And also the kind of love Bronte was portraying is that tragic idealised sort - passionate, obsessive, unstopable, and unlikely to occur unless you're a stalker. The book seems like a teenager's (or in this case, a woman in her late twenties) way to pass the time, not a literary work of genius.

I can't believe some people actually think Emily Bronte was a better writer than Charlotte.

Rant done.


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