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Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence

Sons and Lovers (1913)

by D. H. Lawrence

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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7,15279497 (3.58)2 / 265



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Showing 1-5 of 75 (next | show all)
The best of the lot.
  laurenbufferd | Nov 14, 2016 |
I know. I'm an idiot. Book is listed 9th by the Modern Library among the best novels ever written. I just didn't see it. As a former editor for a large trade house, I couldn't help but wonder where Lawrence's editor was. Just in terms of the amount of sheer repetition ("He almost hated her," and various iterations of this sentiment, appeared once every two pages, it seemed). When you talk about the emerging consciousness of a young man, Joyce has written the handbook, and I feel Lawrence just didn't live up to his own talent here. So yes, shudder at my score if you will, but I have to be honest. I just didn't' like it. ( )
1 vote bookofmoons | Sep 1, 2016 |
(23) Overwrought and tortured are two words that come to mind. Every year at this time I re-read a book I have read in the past - typically the distant past. This year I chose a classic from freshman English that I chose to read for a book report. I remember liking it, but having a bit of a hard time getting through it. Well - for once my long ago self agrees with my today self. This is the story of a family living in relative poverty in coal mining rural England, maybe turn of the century. The husband and wife are mutually disappointed in each other but Mrs. Morel turns from her husband to her sons for her validation and meaning, and then eventually to one son in particular, Paul Morel. We grow up with Paul as he tries to forge an identity as a man, an artist, a son, a lover. Are Paul's troubles because of his too tight bond with his mother? I really don't know when all is said and done.

Really, I wanted to chop Paul in the throat. He so reminded me of a former boyfriend of mine - an indecisive, self-obsessed, yet self-possessed man-child, who nonetheless is charming and captivating to women. Really what he put Miriam through was unforgivable. But it wasn't so much that he was comparing his women to his mother and finding them lacking. . . Can't quite figure out what I am to glean as a message from Paul's warm and loving relationship with his mother, yet his failed relationships with women.

As I mentioned - the writing is over the top and at times mind-numbingly histrionic with the nature, and the melodramatic emotions. With the overt mentions of sex and the innuendo - my goodness, the scene in the cherry tree before his first union with Miriam -- I imagine this book was somewhat riske for the early 20th century. For better or for worse, I find myself thinking about this strange book and trying to figure it out. It makes me think about my little sons as men someday. It makes me reflect on my own experience with a Paul Morel.

I am glad I re-read it, but I won't rush out to another D.H. Lawrence anytime soon. I have mixed feelings - perplexing, a bit uneven, but ultimately compelling. I wish I could go back and read my book report from 9th grade - whatever could I have possibly said! ( )
1 vote jhowell | Jun 11, 2016 |
I tried to read another Lawrence book. What was I thinking? Go away Lawrence, leave me alone!

( )
  Garrison0550 | May 10, 2016 |
A story about love, relationships, and disappointments, told in rich language, evoking a time and a place in British history that is at once foreign and familiar. That specific way of life, the grinding life of a miner and the ways in which mining communities rubbed along, has disappeared. The experience of people struggling to exist through low paid jobs, the tensions within families under that sort of economic stress, are still present. Although set in a different era, there is much that is relevant to modern life. Lawrence writes about people, and the way in which they deal with life. He has great insight into human nature and motivations behind behaviour. He writes fairly about both men and women, recognising that both genders are just people, and there is good and bad in both. I was at times transported by his writing, there with the Morel family in every moment Lawrence describes. He understands the dynamics of family life. He also understands the hopes and disappointments of love. At other times, when he indulged himself too much in ruminating on his own personality through the guise of Paul Morel, he bored me. ( )
1 vote missizicks | Apr 16, 2016 |
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» Add other authors (29 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lawrence, D. H.primary authorall editionsconfirmed
Anderson, BarbaraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Baron, CarlEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Baron, HelenEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Beal, AnthonyIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Blake, VictoriaIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brotherus, AuneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cancogni, FrancaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Daly, MacdonaldEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
de la Plaza, LuisTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
DeMott, BenjaminIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Durov, ValerieEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dyer, GeoffIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Eyre, Sir RichardIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fournier-Pargoire, JeanneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Francioli, PaolaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gelli, PieroIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gibson, JamesEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gilbert, YvonnrCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gilpin, SamAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gopegui, BelénForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Halson, GeoffreyEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hilská, KateřinaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ilona, RónaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jackson, DennisAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kazin, AlfredIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kliphuis, J.F.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kristensen, TomTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Martínez-Lage, MiguelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Morrison, BlakeIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moynahan, JulianEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nordon, PierreTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Oeser, Hans-ChristianTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Robinson, SheilaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sagar, KeithIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Slack, PaulNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sterlin, JennyNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thorne, BobIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Trotter, DavidEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vance, SimonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Venning, ChristopherEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0375753737, Paperback)

Sons and Lovers was the first modern portrayal of a phenomenon that later, thanks to Freud, became easily recognizable as the Oedipus complex. Never was a son more indentured to his mother's love and full of hatred for his father than Paul Morel, D.H. Lawrence's young protagonist. Never, that is, except perhaps Lawrence himself. In his 1913 novel he grappled with the discordant loves that haunted him all his life--for his spiritual childhood sweetheart, here called Miriam, and for his mother, whom he transformed into Mrs. Morel. It is, by Lawrence's own account, a book aimed at depicting this woman's grasp: "as her sons grow up she selects them as lovers--first the eldest, then the second. These sons are urged into life by their reciprocal love of their mother--urged on and on. But when they come to manhood, they can't love, because their mother is the strongest power in their lives."

Of course, Mrs. Morel takes neither of her two elder sons (the first of whom dies early, which further intensifies her grip on Paul) as a literal lover, but nonetheless her psychological snare is immense. She loathes Paul's Miriam from the start, understanding that the girl's deep love of her son will oust her: "She's not like an ordinary woman, who can leave me my share in him. She wants to absorb him." Meanwhile, Paul plays his part with equal fervor, incapable of committing himself in either direction: "Why did his mother sit at home and suffer?... And why did he hate Miriam, and feel so cruel towards her, at the thought of his mother. If Miriam caused his mother suffering, then he hated her--and he easily hated her." Soon thereafter he even confesses to his mother: "I really don't love her. I talk to her, but I want to come home to you."

The result of all this is that Paul throws Miriam over for a married suffragette, Clara Dawes, who fulfills the sexual component of his ascent to manhood but leaves him, as ever, without a complete relationship to challenge his love for his mother. As Paul voyages from the working-class mining world to the spheres of commerce and art (he has fair success as a painter), he accepts that his own achievements must be equally his mother's. "There was so much to come out of him. Life for her was rich with promise. She was to see herself fulfilled... All his work was hers."

The cycles of Paul's relationships with these three women are terrifying at times, and Lawrence does nothing to dim their intensity. Nor does he shirk in his vivid, sensuous descriptions of the landscape that offers up its blossoms and beasts and "shimmeriness" to Paul's sensitive spirit. Sons and Lovers lays fully bare the souls of men and earth. Few books tell such whole, complicated truths about the permutations of love as resolutely without resolution. It's nothing short of searing to be brushed by humanity in this manner. --Melanie Rehak

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:53 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

"Sons and Lovers is one of the landmark novels of the twentieth century. When it appeared in 1913, it was immediately recognized as the first great modern restatement of the oedipal drama, and it is now widely considered the major work of D.H. Lawrence's early period. This intensely autobiographical novel recounts the story of Paul Morel, a young artist growing to manhood in a British working-class family rife with conflict. The author's vivid evocation of the all-consuming nature of possessive love and sexual attraction makes this one of his most powerful novels."--Jacket.… (more)

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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141441445, 0141199857

Urban Romantics

An edition of this book was published by Urban Romantics.

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