Wuthering Heights

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One thing this list is teaching me is that you should banish all preconceived notions of what a book is about until you’ve read it.  As Ayn Rand would say, “Check your premises.”

I always thought Wuthering Heights was more of a “Little Women” kind of story, romantic and flighty, with a weak passion more like Anna Karenina (my opinion, I’m sure some will disagree).  I was so wrong!  For some reason I expected Emily Bronte to be childish in her description of love, but she really captured the bare bones, inside out, gut wrenching torture of true love. 

Wuthering Heights is a perverse, twisted, abusive love story, full of real heartache and desire.  It’s the story of Catherine Earnshaw and her undying, unstoppable love for and with a man named Heathcliff.  Their love was without question; their souls were bound in life and eventually in death.  Part of the story is of the madness of both people when their love was denied each other.  Without spoiling it, at some point one of them dies, and the rest of the book is about the devastation and heartache of the remaining person (but it’s not as depressing at it sounds).       

The only thing I didn’t like was I got the feeling the book didn’t really end.  I still find myself thinking, “I gotta go finish Wuthering Heights.”  Oh wait, I did that!  It didn’t end abruptly or anything, and didn’t leave any loose ends, it just felt unfinished.  It may be because several generations of people were covered, and I kind of latched on to the second generation, so when their story ended halfway through the book I felt like something was missing. 

This is really a great novel.  Bronte did an amazing job of creating another world, very much like in The Secret Garden, where you could really identify with the characters and use Wuthering Heights as your place to escape.  I definitely recommend it.

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