HomeGroupsTalkZeitgeist
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

Gone to Earth by Mary Webb
Loading...

Gone to Earth (1917)

by Mary Webb

Other authors: John Buchan (Introduction)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
287539,220 (3.21)67

None.

Loading...

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 67 mentions

Showing 5 of 5
This author and book was suggested to me by my daughter. The main character is Hazel Woodus, a childlike woman who lives in the forest outside of Shropshire, England in the later part of the 19th Century. She is loved by two men: a pastor, Edward and a squire, Reddin. Both of them with two different natures but both of one desire, to tame her. This book sounds like a gothic tale, but it is not. Mary Webb, the author, has her own wonderful voice and unique style of writing, like none other. It recalls the work of Thomas Hardy and the Brontes in it's darkness and angst. I plan on reading Precious Bane next. This is one of my all time favorite novels. ( )
  Judy_Ryfinski | Jan 20, 2016 |
This author and book was suggested to me by my daughter. The main character is Hazel Woodus, a childlike woman who lives in the forest outside of Shropshire, England in the later part of the 19th Century. She is loved by two men: a pastor, Edward and a squire, Reddin. Both of them with two different natures but both of one desire, to tame her. This book sounds like a gothic tale, but it is not. Mary Webb, the author, has her own wonderful voice and unique style of writing, like none other. It recalls the work of Thomas Hardy and the Brontes in it's darkness and angst. I plan on reading Precious Bane next. This is one of my all time favorite novels. ( )
  Judy_Ryfinski | Jan 20, 2016 |
This was an interesting book, and more compelling than I'd expected it to be.

It's very didactic and philosophical, but the gist of the plot (in modern terms)is of a young and naive woman torn between the desires of a Nice Guy (tm) and a Bad Boy.

It is very clear that neither of them are more concerned about her than of their ideas about her- this is explicitly stated, many times, in the text. She has her passion- for the natural world- and neither of her suitors pay any attention to that.

I will say the Nice Guy (tm) actually did stand up for her more than one would have expected, and without making demands on her (except in his mind). Nonetheless, it was rather a classic tragedy, win which the sad outcome is inevitable based on the various characters and situations involved.

I am not really sure what Webb's opinion was; although she laid the fault of the tragedy squarely on the men, she also did not treat Hazel- the female protagonist- as an entire person, capable of choosing; she was more of a force of nature. I assume that the dialog of "what women are" has, in the past 100 years, changed enough that it's hard for me to grasp her point without absent context.

This novel also has some brilliant passages describing the natural world- flowers, storms, trees, etc.- worth reading for that. ( )
1 vote cissa | Jun 1, 2012 |
Mary Webb is the unfashionable author of rural novels of the kind parodied so sharply and hilariously by Stella Gibbons in Cold Comfort Farm. If you can get past the unintentionally amusing dialogue, however, there is more to this novel than romantic melodrama and, while she's hardly the equal of Thomas Hardy, she deals movingly and powerfully with her themes.

The central character, Hazel Woodus, is an eighteen-year-old girl living in a hovel with her unloving father. They live in that remote, awe-inspiring, harsh yet beautiful part of Shropshire that borders Wales. Hazel is a child of nature, with little understanding of the 'rules' governing polite, civilised society, and - when she does become aware of them - she dismisses what she sees as pointless. In common with Mary Webb, who became a vegetarian in childhood, Hazel opposes all forms of cruelty, and fox-hunting in particular. She adopts an orphan fox cub, with whom she closely identifies. Both she and Foxy are destined to be victims of cruelty - of the hunt in Foxy's case, of human callousness in Hazel's case.

Married to Edward Marston, who wishes only to look after her and allows her to treat him like a brother, Hazel is pursued by the fox-hunting squire Jack Reddin, who arouses her latent sexuality. She detests Reddin, whose cruelty she is all too well aware of, but she cannot break free of him even though she knows Edward is the better man and that she was happy with Edward.

The publication year of the novel is a reminder of what was going on in the larger world at the time, i.e. the Second World War (Webb's three brothers were all involved in the conflict). An atmosphere of senseless cruelty pervades the novel, and also a feeling that 'civilised' society is less civilised than it appears at a superficial level. [October 2007] ( )
2 vote startingover | Feb 1, 2011 |
This was like Thomas Hardy mixed up with Jane Austen with a smattering of DH Lawrence and an extra helping of melodrama at the end. It was a reasonable story, but it helps if you like lots of descriptions of nature and fey characters. An understanding of Potteries dialect would help too. ( )
1 vote jayne_charles | Aug 29, 2010 |
Showing 5 of 5
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Mary Webbprimary authorall editionscalculated
Buchan, JohnIntroductionsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Baldwin, StanleyIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Duncan, ErikaIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
People/Characters
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
To him
whose presence is home
First words
Every so often one discovers something which strikes a chord so personal that, though unfamiliar, it seems to function as a fragment of a memory long lost. (Introduction)
Small feckless clouds were hurried across the vast untroubled sky - shepherdless, futile, imponderable - and were torn to fragments on the fangs of the mountains, so ending their ephemeral adventures with nothing of their fugitive existence left but a few tears.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Blurbers
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English

None

Book description
From the back cover: Hazel Woodus is a creature of the wild. Daughter of a Welsh gypsy and a beekeeper, she is happiest living in her forest cottage in the remote Shropshire hills, where she is at one with the winds and the seasons, and protector and friend of the wild animals she loves

Mary Web's Shropshire is as anthromorphic as Thomas Hardy's Wessex; the natural elements that pervade the hiss surrounding Hazel's home are spirited, bewitched. Like Tess of the D'Urbervilles, Hazel Woodus has a beauty and innocence hat is an irresistible magnet to men. Edward Marston, the gentle local minister, offers her human companionship and love. Jack Reddin, the local squire, awakens her to the deeper, more physical elements of human nature. Blinded by passion, both of these men fail to comprehend Hazel's essence. Like any natural being, she cannot be harnessed; her dark fate unfolds relentlessly.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0860681432, Paperback)

The daughter of a Welsh gypsy and a crazy bee-keeper, Hazel Woodus is happiest living in her forest cottage in the remote Shropshire hills, at one with the winds and seasons, protector and friend of the wild animals she loves. But Hazel's beauty and innocence prove irresistible to the men in her orbit. Both Jack Reddin, the local squire and Edward Marston, the gentle minister, offer her human love. Hazel's fate unfolds as simply and relentlessly as a Greek tragedy, as a child of nature is drawn into a world of mortal passion in which she must eternally be a stranger.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:11:19 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Hazel Woodus has a father who plays the harp and builds coffins. Her closest friend is a pet fox. Even so, this beautiful child of nature can't help but draw men to her, including the minister who she marries and the fox-hunter who relentlessly pursues her. Hazel's na vet allows Mary Webb's themes of human cruelty, savagery, and sacrifice to come through.… (more)

Quick Links

Popular covers

Rating

Average: (3.21)
0.5
1 3
1.5
2 2
2.5 7
3 13
3.5 3
4 8
4.5 2
5 4

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.

 

About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 119,983,871 books! | Top bar: Always visible