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Emily's Ghost: A Novel of the Brontë…

Emily's Ghost: A Novel of the Brontë Sisters

by Denise Giardina

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A beautifully imagined and poignant fictional account of the lives of the Bronte sisters, focusing (as is evident from the title) on Emily and on how her life on the Yorkshire moors shaped her every thought and action, very like Cathy in Wuthering Heights. The end is especially satisfying and touching, though the entire novel does an excellent job weaving together class conflict, the evils of industrialization in factory-era Britain, country curate lives, and women's affairs of the nineteenth century. Overall, an excellent read. ( )
  rwilliab | Nov 21, 2014 |
There is an important question that you must ask yourself when deciding to read this book. Is it alright with you for a historical fiction author take what seems to be evidence of a friendship and turn it into a love story? How far can an author go with inventing the story? I was aware of the controversy of this book before I started reading it. I decided to read this book with open eyes and decide whether or not it was a good story or not.

This tale is through the eyes of Emily Bronte, the author of Wuthering Heights. That definitely colors the story. Emma is portrayed as a wild soul who loved to roam the land where the heather blooms, a nature lover, a woman who lived partially in a fantasy world. Her sister, Charlotte, the author of Jane Eyre does not fare so well. She is ambitious, easy to have crushes and determined that the other sisters do as she wanted. Anne is the younger sister and is fragile, asthmatic and sweet. Their brother, Brandwell is the lone son; he drinks too much, and loses his jobs easily.

The girls grew up with other sisters who passed on early in this story.They resided in a parsonage in Haworth with their father and an aunt. They were poor but not as much as the mill workers. Their father encouraged all his daughters to read what they wanted and live with more freedom than most of the curate’s daughters.

When their father grew too old to handle all of his pastoral duties, he asked for help and clergyman William Weightman came to Haworth. The story begins! He is a friend of the poor and works behind the scenes to help the mill workers to fight the mill owners non-violently and helps the poor in every way that he could.

I enjoyed the beginning of the story greatly and felt it that pace started to lag some after that. Then the events picked and emotions started to swirl more and more violently. This book would not let me go!It is about romance, love of nature, spirituality, the lot of the mill workers, responsibility to the poor and unfortunate. The feeling that I had in the early morning is that this book is very much like Wuthering Heights at times in its mood and gives a fuller vision of what Emily must have felt when she wrote

I recommend this book to readers of historical fiction who are not afraid of an inventive author. I also feel obligated to read about Charlotte Bronte in all fairness. ( )
  Carolee888 | Sep 21, 2013 |
William Weightman comes to Haworth as a curate and soon finds himself attached to the entire Brontë clan. He assumes some of Patrick’s duties at the parish, helps Branwell with his addictions and keeps each of the sisters from being too lonely. Weightman harbors a special attraction to Emily, who returns his feelings, but knows in her heart that she’s not the proper material for a churchman’s wife. They agree that she will governess for six months, broaden herself, and then evaluate their future. But six months is a long time, time they might not have.

This book is so very readable. The pages just flew by and it was over, in one sitting. Of course, that may be because Emily has always been my favorite of the Brontë sisters. There is never enough ‘Emily’ material around to suite me and it was nice to see her enjoy a little romance. I knew that Charlotte married one of Patrick’s curates (Arthur Bell Nichols) but I never considered that Emily or Anne ever had feelings for the men in their father’s employ. It seems a little cliché until you consider how isolated they were, and then it feels sad. Well, most everything around the Brontës carries a tragic weight, doesn’t it?

I was surprised at how Haworth was portrayed in the novel as a dirty, unsanitary slum. Honestly, I know nothing about the place but I’ve always imagined it as heartbreakingly beautiful in the way wild and natural places can sometimes be. This setting was such a change from that. It reminded me somewhat of Gaskell’s North and South.

This has been my favorite Brontë book so far this year. ( )
1 vote VictoriaPL | Jul 21, 2011 |
I loved this book. Borrowed from Library ( )
  babish | Jun 19, 2011 |
Emily's Ghost is well-written and simply beautiful. I found myself easily and deliciously lost in the world of the Brontë sisters almost immediately upon picking up the book. From the breathtaking descriptions of the moors to the Victorian boarding school, Emily's Ghost is full of the Gothic elements that make for a wonderfully atmospheric novel. Giardina's style of writing is lyrical and descriptive, illustrating the unconventional love story at the heart of the novel. The characters and their compelling relationships are well-developed and moving, giving the reader insight into the hearts and minds of some of the most remarkable women ever to put pen to paper.

Emily's Ghost is a incredibly imaginative piece of historical fiction. I cannot testify to the historical accuracy, but I can tell you one thing: after reading Emily's Ghost, I will definitely be picking up the Brontë novels. This was an impressive and enjoyable read, and I highly recommend it to fans of historical fiction, classic fiction, Gothic fiction - basically anyone who appreciates a well-written and entertaining novel. ( )
1 vote susanbevans | Dec 1, 2009 |
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(Prologue)Emily Bronte got on with her life as before, except she caught cold more easily. 
(Book) At night the door to other worlds opened wide. 
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Book description
A fictionalized biographical account of the Bronte family and their relationship with the idealistic clergyman William Weightman who captured the hearts of all three sisters, especially Emily.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 039306915X, Hardcover)

A lustrous, beautifully written reimagining of the Brontë family—and of Emily Brontë’s passionate engagement with life.

Enigmatic, intelligent, and fiercely independent, Emily Brontë refuses to bow to the conventions of her day: she is distrustful of marriage, prefers freedom above all else, and walks alone at night on the moors above the isolated rural village of Haworth. But Emily’s life, along with the rest of the Brontë family, is turned upside down with the arrival of an idealistic clergyman named William Weightman. Weightman champions poor mill workers’ rights, mingles with radical labor agitators, and captivates Haworth—and the Brontës especially—with his energy and charm. An improbable friendship between Weightman and Emily develops into a fiery but unconsummated love affair—and when tragedy strikes, the relationship continues, like the love story at the heart of Wuthering Heights, beyond the grave.

Denise Giardina, whose fiction has been described as “brilliant. . . heart-wrenching, tough and tender” (Los Angeles Times Book Review), writes a stirring story about faith, passion, longing, and romantic solitude.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:44 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Emily Brontë refuses to bow to the conventions of her day. She is distrustful of marriage, prefers freedom above all else, and walks alone at night on the moors above the isolated rural village of Haworth. But Emily's life, along with the rest of the Brontë family, is turned upside down with the arrival of an idealistic clergyman named Willam Weightman. An improbable friendship between Weightman and Emily develops into something deeper, and when tragedy strikes, the relationship continues.… (more)

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W.W. Norton

2 editions of this book were published by W.W. Norton.

Editions: 039306915X, 0393338487

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