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Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy
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Far from the Madding Crowd

by Thomas Hardy

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
8,254145596 (3.97)558
  1. 71
    Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (Booksloth)
  2. 40
    The Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy (Porua)
    Porua: I would like to recommend another Thomas Hardy novel, The Return of the Native. When I first read The Return of the Native it kind of surprised me to see how very similar it is to Far from the Madding Crowd. They are very similar in their story lines, characterization and narrative style.… (more)
  3. 30
    Middlemarch by George Eliot (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: These 19th-century classics portray complex romantic relationships with vivid descriptions and a strong sense of place. With intricate, twisting plots, both offer their protagonists bleak outlooks that end in satisfying resolutions.
  4. 00
    Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell (Lapsus_Linguae)
    Lapsus_Linguae: Both main heroines are strong-willed independent women who take up entrepreneurship.
  5. 22
    Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy (Booksloth)
  6. 00
    The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë (Lapsus_Linguae)
    Lapsus_Linguae: Both novels feature a strong female protagonist trapped in an abusive marriage. Endings are also pretty similar.
  7. 23
    York Notes: Far from the Madding Crowd by Barbara Murray (Sylak)
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» See also 558 mentions

English (142)  French (1)  Swedish (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (145)
Showing 1-5 of 142 (next | show all)
Which would you rather have? Burning passion or constant loyalty? ( )
  nittnut | Sep 5, 2018 |
After reading many contemporary novels, Clock Dance the most recent,
it is so good to be in the hands of a master again!

Everything - plot, character, moods, tone, point of view, and so gloriously, the settings - is finely tuned and precisely and beautifully delivered.

The only development that, to me, never got fully resolved was Boldwood (now, there's a name to live up to!) capitulating so quickly to Falling In Love.
It would have seemed more in tune with his character to stay distant for a little longer until he could comprehend the nature of both his own
feelings and Bathsheba's responses.

Hard to read how gentle Gabirel Oak was with the newborn lambs, then killing the pets to eat.

Far From The Madding Crowd certainly stands as a testimonial for caution equally to lovers of both sexes for Love at First Sight! ( )
  m.belljackson | Aug 13, 2018 |
I don't know what it was with this Hardy, especially as so many people give it a 5 star rating, but I felt like I was really labouring through the first half of it. It seemed to take so long for the scene setting of the three suitors before the story really got going, and compared with other Hardy novels I've loved I wasn't feeling the characters for the first 150 pages or so.

Once it finally got into its stride it was standard Hardy gold - drama, tragedy, wonderful characterisation. I just wish it hadn't taken quite so long to pull me in. ( )
  AlisonY | Jul 17, 2018 |
Far From the Madding Crowd tells the story of beautiful Bathsheba Everdene, a fiercely independent woman who inherits a farm and decides to run it herself. She rejects a marriage proposal from Gabriel Oak, a loyal man who takes a job on her farm after losing his own in an unfortunate accident. The book is beautifully written and shows the atmosphere of 19th century England. I loved watching the relationship between Bathsheba and Gabriel evolve. Hardy does an excellent job of character and plot development. This is a story not to be missed and teaches a good lesson about being careful when you turn down your first suitor! ( )
1 vote EadieB | Jul 15, 2018 |
Thomas Hardy is a writer who paints. He paints pictures of the environment his characters inhabit, he paints pictures of the society they are a part of, and he paints pictures of the people, and makes them stand before you full-blown and detailed. That is probably one of the reasons I love reading Hardy so much. Each of the major characters in Far From the Madding Crowd walks off the page and becomes quite real.

Bathsheba Everdene is a complicated woman in a world where women were so often portrayed as one-dimensional. She carries with her some of the baggage of Victorian society and Hardy has not freed her from that, but that is what makes her realistic and substantial. Troy, who might have been a cliche, deviates from that in his reaction to the death of Fanny Robin and becomes a study in the worthlessness of an idle man. Boldwood represents unhealthy obsession in its worst form and his pursuit of Bathsheba is totally destructive its nature. It is only Gabriel Oak who represents man in harmony with nature, self and the world of other people. Oak is that indeed, an oak among trees of much lesser strength.

Far From the Madding Crowd seems to have been written before Hardy's cynicism has taken full root. He still believes there are paths that lead to happiness and success. In contrast with Jude this is a very upbeat tale. But even here, nothing in life comes easily. Every one of these characters experiences great difficulties both financially and emotionally and all are humbled by the events of their lives.

I thoroughly enjoyed this read and was left with a sense of satisfaction at the end. Having previously read it as an adolescent, I feel I brought a different understanding to the story this time around. ( )
1 vote phantomswife | Jul 6, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 142 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (56 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Thomas Hardyprimary authorall editionscalculated
Allingham, Helen PatersonIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dickerson, GeorgeIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Drabble, MargaretIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lee, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
O'Toole, TessNotessecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vance, NormanIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
From wikipedia 19 Dec 2011 - Hardy took the title from Thomas Gray's poem 'Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard' (1751):
Far from the madding crowd's ignoble strife
Their sober wishes never learn'd to stray;
Along the cool sequester'd vale of life
They kept the noiseless tenor of their way.
Dedication
First words
When Farmer Oak smiled, the corners of his mouth spread till they were within an unimportant distance of his ears, his eyes were reduced to chinks, and diverging wrinkles appeared round them, extending upon his countenance like the rays in a rudimentary sketch of the rising sun.
On 30 November 1872 a letter arrived at Thomas Hardy's isolated cottage in Dorset that must by any standards be considered astonishing. (Introduction)
Quotations
It appears that ordinary men take wives because possession is not possible without marriage, and that ordinary women accept husbands because marriage is not possible without possession; with totally differing aims the method is the same on both sides.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0141439653, Paperback)

Set in his fictional Wessex countryside in southwest England, Far from the Madding Crowd was Thomas Hardy's breakthrough work. Though it was first published anonymously in 1874, the quick and tremendous success of Far from the Madding Crowd persuaded Hardy to give up his first profession, architecture, to concentrate on writing fiction. The story of the ill-fated passions of the beautiful Bathsheba Everdene and her three suitors offers a spectacle of country life brimming with an energy and charm not customarily associated with Hardy.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:20 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

This updated authoritative edition of the classic Hardy novel, which was published anonymously and first attributed to George Eliot, is set from Hardy's revised, unedited final draft of 1912 and features a new Introduction and Afterword. There is in England no more real or typical district than Thomas Hardy's imaginary Wessex, the scattered fields and farms of which were first discovered in Far from the Madding Crowd. It is here that Gabriel Oak observes Bathsheba, the young mistress of Weatherbury Farm, fall victim to her amorous caprices. He stands by her through one marriage to a handsome, corruptly sentimental sergeant. Selflessly altruistic, he sees her through another betrothal to her compulsive, puritanical neighbor-as unaware as she of the stroke of Fate that will effect their ultimate union. Published anonymously and first attributed to George Eliot, Far from the Madding Crowd won Hardy immediate success; it combines an architecturally perfect plot with the philosophical overtones that were to set the theme for all his later works. The text of this Signet Classic is set from Hardy's revised final version of Far from the Madding Crowd , published in 1912 in the authoritative Wessex edition.… (more)

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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141439653, 0141198931

Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

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