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Far from the Madding Crowd [Hardcover]

Thomas Hardy
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Oct. 15 1991 Everyman's Library Classics & Contemporary Classics (Book 21)

Far From the Madding Crowd, published in 1874, is the book that made Hardy famous. 

Bathsheba Everdene is a prosperous farmer in Hardy’s fictional Wessex county whose strong-minded independence and vanity lead to disastrous consequences for her and the three very different men who pursue her: the obsessed farmer William Boldwood, dashing and seductive Sergeant Frank Troy, and the devoted shepherd Gabriel Oak.

Despite the violent ends of several of its major characters, Far from the Madding Crowd is the sunniest and least brooding of Hardy’s great novels, as Bathsheba and her suitors move through a beautifully realized late-nineteenth-century agrarian landscape that is still almost untouched by the industrial revolution and the encroachment of modern life. With an introduction by Michael Slater


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Product Description

From Library Journal

Random's Modern Library is reproducing this Hardy standard as a tie-in to a Masterpiece Theater presentation and offering a quality hardcover for a reasonable price.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

“Far from the Madding Crowd is the first of Thomas Hardy’s great novels, and the first to sound the tragic note
for which his fiction is best remembered.”
-Margaret Drabble

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it March 22 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A great old Victorian Gothic romance well worth the read with all the tradgedy and triumph of that period in time. There is also a great movie starring Julie Christie by the same name..
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Forget the infamous "love triangle"... March 3 2004
Format:Paperback
In Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy introduces us to the precarious "love square". At the core of all the turmoil is beautiful farm girl, Bathsheba Everdene - spirited, vain, intelligent and adept at toying with the hearts of men. Inevitably beguiled by her charms a humble and kind farmer, Gabriel Oak, fervently attempts to win Bathsheba's affections. Enter the competition: (suitor#2) Farmer Boldwood - a wealthy and temperate middle-aged man respected in the community, eventually plunges into maniacal obsession at the mere possibility of making the beloved Miss Everdene his wife; and (suitor#3) Sergeant Francis Troy - a dashing young philandering soldier, with his share of inner demons, ruthlessness and vanity, vies for Bathsheba's hand in marriage. Bathsheba's ultimate decision, and the cataclysm it evokes, lies at the epicenter of Hardy's unforgettable ambivalent story.
Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy's fourth novel, saw publication in 1874 and earned him widespread popularity as a writer. A delicately woven tale of unrequited love and regret, set in the mid-19th century, Far From the Madding Crowd is a masterpiece of pure story-telling. Hardy's classic style is a pleasure to read as he masterfully brings his characters and their dealings to life. I would not hesitate to say it definitely captured my heart as another favourite.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Forget the infamous "love triangle"... March 3 2004
Format:Hardcover
In Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy introduces us to the precarious "love square". At the core of all the turmoil is beautiful farm girl, Bathsheba Everdene - spirited, vain, intelligent and adept at toying with the hearts of men. Inevitably beguiled by her charms a humble and kind farmer, Gabriel Oak, fervently attempts to win Bathsheba's affections. Enter the competition: (suitor#2) Farmer Boldwood - a wealthy and temperate middle-aged man respected in the community, eventually plunges into maniacal obsession at the mere possibility of making the beloved Miss Everdene his wife; and (suitor#3) Sergeant Francis Troy - a dashing young philandering soldier, with his share of inner demons, ruthlessness and vanity, vies for Bathsheba's hand in marriage. Bathsheba's ultimate decision, and the cataclysm it evokes, lies at the epicenter of Hardy's unforgettable ambivalent story.
Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy's fourth novel, saw publication in 1874 and earned him widespread popularity as a writer. A delicately woven tale of unrequited love and regret, set in the mid-19th century, Far From the Madding Crowd is a masterpiece of pure story-telling. Hardy's classic style is a pleasure to read as he masterfully brings his characters and their dealings to life. I would not hesitate to say it definitely captured my heart as another favourite.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Far From the Madding Crowd read by Nathaniel Parker March 19 2010
By A. Swnb
Format:Audio CD
I have listened to this audiobook and highly, highly recommend it! Mr. Parker is an amazing and prodigiously talented voice artist, and it's almost unbelievable how he creates the diverse characters with his incredibly adaptable voice alone, to the point where you can picture each and every person by sound alone. The part where young Cainey Ball is choking on running and trying to talk at the same time ... hilarious. The story itself is really wonderful. It creates a living picture of life in the place and time. And of course it is a great love story. All in all, this audiobook is, for me, 13 hours of pure bliss.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Forget the infamous "love triangle"... March 3 2004
Format:Audio CD
In Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy introduces us to the precarious "love square". At the core of all the turmoil is beautiful farm girl, Bathsheba Everdene - spirited, vain, intelligent and adept at toying with the hearts of men. Inevitably beguiled by her charms a humble and kind farmer, Gabriel Oak, fervently attempts to win Bathsheba's affections. Enter the competition: (suitor#2) Farmer Boldwood - a wealthy and temperate middle-aged man respected in the community, eventually plunges into maniacal obsession at the mere possibility of making the beloved Miss Everdene his wife; and (suitor#3) Sergeant Francis Troy - a dashing young philandering soldier, with his share of inner demons, ruthlessness and vanity, vies for Bathsheba's hand in marriage. Bathsheba's ultimate decision, and the cataclysm it evokes, lies at the epicenter of Hardy's unforgettable ambivalent story.
Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy's fourth novel, saw publication in 1874 and earned him widespread popularity as a writer. A delicately woven tale of unrequited love and regret, set in the mid-19th century, Far From the Madding Crowd is a masterpiece of pure story-telling. Hardy's classic style is a pleasure to read as he masterfully brings his characters and their dealings to life. I would not hesitate to say it definitely captured my heart as another favourite.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wild and wooly in Wessex Oct. 30 2003
By A.J.
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Few literary settings are more distinctive than Thomas Hardy's Wessex, a hilly, chalky, bucolic quilt of pastures and villages occupying the southwest of England, its residents sworn to the immutable cultural traditions of centuries long past. But it is not the goal of "Far from the Madding Crowd" to be merely a sentimental portrait of a region for which Hardy has a great affection, but a grandiose drama about the eventual union of a man and the woman he loves. In summary, Hardy does accede to a Happily Ever After ending, but how he gets to this point is why his novel deserves to be read.
It's not surprising that the novel was originally attributed to George Eliot because the protagonist, Gabriel Oak, as the novel's moral anchor, is very similar in character to Eliot's Adam Bede. Oak is trying to make a living on his own as a farmer, but a stroke of bad luck compels him to take a job as a shepherd for a beautiful young woman named Bathsheba Everdene who has recently inherited her uncle's farm and commands a large number of workers and servants. Oak iconically personifies the rustic setting, not only because of his surname but because of the intimacy with which he communes with nature, and his fondness for playing the flute seems designed to evoke an image of Pan.
Oak has an awkward history with Bathsheba -- he had known her before her windfall, but in her independent spirit she spurned his love. As the head of Weatherbury farm, however, she can't get by on her independence alone, and she needs Oak's expertise in ensuring her sheep are healthy and fit for wool production. Her romantic attention turns toward a profligate soldier named Francis Troy who, through an unlikely error, has just barely avoided wedding Fanny Robin, one of the Weatherbury servants.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars a very readable classic
While I was reading this book I forgot about the modern world and was totally immersed in a world of farming in the early 19th century. Read more
Published on Oct. 31 2009 by L. L. Whitehead
5.0 out of 5 stars Slow but rewarding
This book was a required read for Academic Decathalon but I was handed the cliff notes and told to study them if I didn't have time to read the book. Read more
Published on Jan. 5 2003 by Megan McKinney
3.0 out of 5 stars Lovely language but long
I read this novel when I was living in Japan. There were no English books avaliable where I was living but a motley collection of classics in the local library. Read more
Published on Oct. 25 2002 by A. J. Bennet
5.0 out of 5 stars Hardy's Classic Wessex Love Story
Having rediscovered Thomas Hardy only recently, I am simply entranced by his excellent prose, his keen powers of description and observation and his spellbinding characters. Read more
Published on Nov. 24 2001 by John Kwok
5.0 out of 5 stars Far from the Madding Crowd
A beautifully written, well-crafted novel of love and passion among the farming folk of Wessex. A thoroughly enjoyable book that evokes the atmosphere of 19th Century England and... Read more
Published on Feb. 23 2001 by Linda Bird
5.0 out of 5 stars A timeless tale
Have you ever read a book, and thought that no-one in 100 years will understand it? Or have you ever read an old book and not fully understood it? Read more
Published on Feb. 20 2001 by David C
5.0 out of 5 stars Hardy's Feel-Good Novel
This is a fantastic introduction to Hardy's work for those who have not yet plunged into his more serious (and tragic) novels -- it's the only Hardy I've read thus far that... Read more
Published on Jan. 5 2001 by Tracy H. Slagter
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