It probably hasn't escaped anyone's attention that I am rather fond of reading, and so I thought that after writing up a post a couple of months ago on one of my favourite books, 'The Bell Jar', I would return today with some appreciation for another favourite book of mine, 'Wuthering Heights' by Emily Bronte.
The Bronte sisters are obviously now regarded as immensely influential literary figures, and therefore I was pretty excited to visit the village of Haworth, where they lived, back in the spring. The first time I read Wuthering Heights (which was actually only last Christmas), it was from a text that I had borrow from school as part of my A-Level English Literature further reading...but when I visited Haworth, I managed to purchase my own copy from the village where Emily Bronte herself once lived, which certainly made me very happy indeed.
Over the years, I have fallen more and more in love with classic literature of the 19th century, and 'Wuthering Heights' has certainly helped to cement this passion of mine. This book is so commonly featured on 'must-read' lists (and rightly so), and I was pretty much hooked to it from the first few chapters onwards - whilst the story is pretty confusing due to the similar names of characters and the bewildering family tree that features, once you get your head around everything, Wuthering Heights becomes a very enthralling tale.
Most people probably know that the novel centres around the relationship between Cathy and Heathcliff (thanks to Kate Bush's infamous song), and it is also set amongst the lonely Yorkshire moors which adds to the gothic and ghostly element. The main plot line follows an orphan Heathcliff who grows up loving Cathy, yet he is bullied by her family and friends, and when his love isn't reciprocated he eventually returns to seek a cruel revenge for the hardships that he has faced. Whilst nowadays the book probably seems rather tame, back when it was published in 1847 it was actually deemed rather controversial due to the intense relationship between the aforementioned characters, which lingers long after both of their deaths.
I know that some people really don't like this book, and I know that others really really love it - as you may have guessed though, I would most definitely put myself into the latter category, because I could most certainly read Wuthering Heights over and over again. In any case though, it is a classic that I would recommend everyone to have a read of... especially when you think of how incredible it was for Emily Bronte to write such an influential piece of work in a time when women had few rights and very little power within society.