This book is still a classic. The fact that this book can still be entertaining nearly a hundred years after it's conception is testament enough to it's quality. It's the story of Lucy, struggling to find a comfortable place in adulthood, struggling to understand herself, struggling with the jarring influences of the unhappy people that surround her. And then she meets Mr. Emerson and his son George. Mr. Emerson is an old man who is disliked among the society folk because his kindness is more genuine than tactful. And his son George, raised free of all the prejudices and narrow-mindedness that plague nearly all the people he meets, is depressed because the universe doesn't seem to fit.
Learning to love a pair like the Emersons would seem to be easy for Lucy, but that is the struggle of this whole novel, how she creates such a muddle out of a simple thing and ends up, for the first time in her life, to begin to see clearly.
Forster finds a nice balance in this novel - engaging plot, unique and well-developed characters, and a fair dose of philosophy to lighten the burdens of your mind (all good philosophy should lighten your mind instead of weighing it down).
I would recommend this book on the simple fact that Mr. Emerson is, in many of his traits, the type of human being we should all strive to become(good-hearted, thought-provoking, devoted to expanding his mind instead of narrowing it, welcoming to all, poetic and deep). That alone recommends it. This may not be Forster's best, but it's one of them, and is more than worth the time (I finished it in three days, awfully fast, hungry for more when it was done).