Sunday, 15 September 2013

He is more myself than I am...

So much for becoming a regular blogger, it's been a month since my last post... oops.
Right now I should be doing history homework but I've already written two essays today and so I'm taking a break to talk about, of all things, Wuthering Heights. Hence the soppy title.
Wuthering Heights was my first re-read of 2013 (leaving it a bit late I know) and I'll be honest, I mainly picked it up because I have to study it for my English A level - I'm so happy about that I can't even explain. This book makes me fangirl an embarrassing amount, and most of the time that happens in the worst possible places - like when a friend mentions the book in the common room and I suddenly become unable to use proper words, settling instead on making noises and flapping my hands around. 
Anyway, Emily Brontë is such a brilliant writer, even though I hated pretty much every. single. character, I loved the book enough to make it one of my new favourites. I first read it when I was about 13 so I didn't really understand much of what was going on. But this time, Heathcliff completely came alive, jumping out from the pages every time he spoke, Cathy was about the most hateful character I think I've ever read about (ugh, I can't even explain how much I hate her), and lovely Edgar Linton made me want to grab him by the shoulders and shake him out of his stupid love for Cathy. 
This is the most quotable book I've read in a long time, and I think Cathy was the only character I hated the whole way through. I felt a lot of things for Heathcliff: pity when he was first taken into Mr Earnshaw's hands and mistreated by Hindley, sympathy when Cathy married another man despite her love for him, and anger when he became basically a cruel psychopath by the end of the book. 

“Be with me always - take any form - drive me mad! only do not leave me in this abyss, where I cannot find you! Oh, God! it is unutterable! I can not live without my life! I can not live without my soul!”

It's definitely Brontë's beautiful writing that makes this book the classic that it is, well that and the somewhat depressing, confusing, but ultimately passionate plot. You can tell that, with all Brontë writes about the soul, and if the soul exists, her writing certainly comes from there. It's one of the most passionate books I've ever read, and it's that which makes her loathsome characters anywhere near relatable. Reading it makes you realise  that there's a part of every character you read about in books within you, even if those characters are slightly strange, like Heathcliff. And so I've come to the conclusion that Emily Brontë was a genius.
Maybe the way to judge whether a book is good or not is to decide whether or not you would re-read it. And although I'll HAVE to re-read it for my exam next year, I think I can safely say I would re-read this book out of choice, although I might leave a bit of a bigger gap in between reads if I had a choice.
There were only two characters I actually liked: Edgar Linton and Hareton Earnshaw. Both of them were lovely, and in a book with mostly nasty characters, I almost had to latch on to the 'quite nice' ones to stay sane. Mostly Hareton and Edger are the characters you feel sorry for whilst both generations of Cathys basically tear them to pieces. What I did like about Wuthering Heights was the contrast between Heathcliff and Cathy's destructive love (or should that be lust?) and the happy love presented at the end of the novel. Brontë definitely makes it clear which love she thinks the most healthy, although if she led the secluded life we are all lead to believe you can't help but wonder if she was dreaming of her own Heathcliff somewhere in the world, waiting for him to save her from the apparently boring life she was leading. 
So no, I'm not now in love with Heathcliff as many women are who read this book are, apparently. Although, having said that who wouldn't want to say that their boyfriend is "more myself than I am"? 
Wuthering Heights is such an amazing book, if you haven't read it yet, seriously go read it now, it's so, so good. But be prepared to feel like Martin Freeman at the beginning of 'The Hobbit' when you start out - i.e. yelling "I'm going on an adventure" whilst running off into the hills; you'll probably have no idea where the book is going most of the time, but it's worth it when you finally work out who everyone is, and how everyone is related to everyone else. It honestly will be one of the best books you will ever read. Have a happy Sunday! 10/10


  1. People say that these characters are horrible, terrible, unimaginable! I wonder where they live exactly. In the real world or a in some fairy tale book, where everybody is so good to be true. I do not expect flat, stock characters when I sit down to read a classic. (Complexity, what makes these characters actually great.) Yet, I see that some people do. = )

    1. I do agree with you to some extent, and it's certainly true that the characters that exist in books hold at least part of the personalities of ourselves and those around us. And in the case of Wuthering Heights, Heathcliff was the most vivid character I've come across in a long, long time. But, then again, I think this has to be done in the right way - i.e. Wuthering Heights - not in the way, say, Thackeray did it in Vanity Fair, where instead of coming alive his characters just became annoying, for me anyway. I do think there is a danger when reading of becoming too immersed in fictional worlds and becoming detached from the real world - I've been meaning to do a post on this for a while actually do maybe I'll start writing that soon :L :) - and believing that books are more real than the world we live in. But, personally, I don't think that's true because, although in books characters can exist who are purely evil or purely good, I don't think that ever happens in real life; there are always aspects real people that make them human, where in books, because characters ultimately come from the imagination, completely one-sided characters can exist. In fact, I might even argue that Cathy is a flat character because there really isn't much to endear her to the reader, she's simply not very nice - then again I might be missing something.
      Sorry for that unnecessarily long reply but your comment really got me thinking :) Thanks for commenting!

  2. another book I need to read :)