Silas Marner, one of George Eliot's superb portrayals of eighteenth century country life, marks an epoch in English fiction in being a truly psychological novel. It deals with two of the greatest themes of all literaure: purification in suffering and regeneration through love. Setting her story in the far-off time when each village was virtually isolated from the rest of the world and when weavers of cloth were strange, reclusive men regarded with superstitious dread, George Eliot draws characters who reflect the human problems of all ages: Silas Marner, the weaver, who has abandoned his faith in God and men, to drop into the lifeless existence of a solitary miser; Godfrey Cass, the rash and weak-willed gentleman, tormented by his secret marriage to a depraved village woman; the lovely Nancy Lammeter, from whom Godfrey conceals the existence of his daughter Eppie; and the merry, golden-haired Eppie, who wins for herself the love that Silas had lavished on his bags of gold coins. With flawless artistry and penetration, George Eliot has told the profoundly moving story of these people in Silas Marner.
It is too beautiful of a day to write a full review, so I'm just gonna make a bullet point list of my thoughts about this book.
- I set out to read this book because my grandma said it was one she read and hated in high school, but then later grew to love. So, basically, I read it so that I could talk with my grandma about it. This isn't something that would ordinarily catch my eye.
- I didn't hate it; I didn't love it. It was just an okay read for me.
- George Eliot's writing isn't particularly difficult to read, but I kept stumbling along the way. I never got used to her style, and it never flowed for me. I'd be reading and all of a sudden, would hit a clunky part that would take me a few re-reads to get through. It did take me a while to get used to the dialects of various characters in the dialogue.
- Despite that, it wasn't a slow read. This is a rather slim volume, and it's not that difficult to read.
- It wasn't a bad story; on the contrary, it was a very interesting story. I really liked the concept of this miser who has lost his faith in humanity really learning what is important in life through little Eppie.
- That said, I never really connected with any of the characters.
- George Eliot really sticks by karma. Everyone gets their due justice in the end.
- One thing I was not fond of was that I never got a clear picture in my mind of anything, not even of any of the characters.
- With talk of religion and derelict fathers (oh, gasp!), obviously it was going to show up on one banned list or another, but personally, I don't think that it's all that controversial.
- I probably won't re-read this. I know, I know, sometimes it takes a re-read or two to really enjoy a book, but I'm just not really interested.
3 / 5
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Happy reading and until next time