By Emily Brontë
2011 Edition published by Barnes and Noble, Inc.
122 Fifth Ave. New York, Ny 10011
Genre: fiction/gothic fiction/romance
Length: 328 pages
“Be with me always – take any form – drive me mad! Only do not leave me in this abyss, where I cannot find you!”
There are few tales of love and loss that emulate so bluntly the hurt felt in the wake of mistakes. A foundling falls in love with the daughter of his benefactor. Over a brief lifetime, the two are thwarted as lovers until Catherine Earnshaw dies of a broken heart – a process that takes years, literally. Heathcliff is left behind to become an even more cynical, cold man. He doesn’t know how to do anything but make anyone and everyone near him miserable – basically, he’s an asshole. The end.
Haha. Yeah, So here’s the sitch. None of the characters of this book are likeable. In fact, they’re actually annoying. They’re whiney, foolish, stupid, vindictive, self-absorbed, and absolutely unsympathetic. The author is a little presumptuous and the character behavior is rather cliché. I rather disliked this book for these reasons (mainly because the characters actually pissed me the fuck off), but found myself continuing to read. Why? I’ll tell you why.
Because this novel speaks to the death of romantic notions. There is something within the pages of this novel that conveys a deep loss of something that, perhaps, people should’t have lost sight of. The entire book is based around characters who feel a fiery love for someone but wind up quietly accepting what they do not yearn for, accepting an unspeakable heartbreak with it.
I can’t put into words how perfectly Emile Brontë captured how miserable people can truly be, and that is a gift. I think she wrote and successfully conveyed exactly what she intended – a lesson.