Remember a while back when I joined a read-a-long for Wuthering Heights and promised that I was going to blog reviews of it? Remember how that hasn’t happened? Yeah. I suck at planned blogging topics.
But. I have actually been participating in the read-a-long for six whole weeks. I actually can’t believe I’ve stuck with it for this whole time. I mean, we all know what a huge success my book club was. So, while I haven’t been awesome about posting here, I have been participating in the discussions over at Unputdownables, which is a site you should totally check out if you’re a book lover.
Since I haven’t kept up in my posting about this over here, I won’t bore you all with a catch up post now. I mean, we’re almost finished; this would basically be an entire book review and we’ve all read Wuthering Heights before, so there’s no need for that. But I do have a few thoughts that I want to share.
I know this phenomenon isn’t new to anyone who re-reads books on a regular basis, but I’ve been struck by the things in this book that I’m noticing and focusing on for this read through. Wuthering Heights is one of my favorite books so this isn’t the second or the third or even the fourth time I’ve read it, but this time, really for the first time, I’m realizing how much I absolutely hate every.single.character. Every other time I’ve read it, I’ve been impressed by the story telling, the imagery, how it might be the greatest revenge story of all time, but never by how terrible each and every character in the book it. I really don’t think I’m overstating this. They’re all the absolute worst.
Don’t get me wrong. I have a lot of sympathy for little Hareton and even a little sympathy for Heathcliffe. But. Sympathy isn’t the same as actually liking them. This is the first time that I’ve read this book and realized that I’m not rooting for anyone.
Now, I don’t think this is the first or second or third or fourth time that I’ve read the book and not been rooting for anyone, but I do think it’s the first time I’ve noticed. And I’m intrigued by that. It’s definitely not new that I don’t like the characters–I remember not liking them before, I just don’t remember actively hating them all. I think it’s a testament to Bronte’s writing and story-telling skills that I’ve always been so caught up in other aspects of the book that I didn’t even notice that every single character is a terrible human being. Frankly, I’m impressed. If Bronte were still alive, I’d probably write a fan letter.
No promises, but I’ll try to do a final thoughts post on Wuthering Heights in a couple of weeks when we finish the read-a-long. In the meantime, keep up with the discussion over on Unputdownables.