Discover George Eliot’s first novel, a tale of rural tragedy and redemption.
It may seem like an old tale: the beautiful village girl, her faithful admirer, a country squire's seduction. But seen through the eyes of any of its players, the old tale becomes one of fresh heartbreak, innocent hopes, best intentions gone awry, and better selves lost and restored. George Eliot's first novel shows all her humane intelligence and intimate knowledge of the richness and complexity of ordinary life.
A first-rate novel
From Adam Bede to Daniel Deronda, she questioned her times. She plumbed ideas, politics, religion, race, and above all the vagaries of the heart
A disconcerting mixture of High Victorian and snappily contemporary. The sentences tend to be massive, slow-moving but deadly accurate: the characters' motivations are dissected, the moral puzzles presented with great clarity
War and Peace, Middlemarch and Anna Karenina were among the lengthy novels that soared in lockdown. What's been drawing us back to the big beasts of literature?