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Taking place in the years leading up to the First Reform Bill of 1832, Middlemarch explores nearly every subject of concern to modern life: art, religion, science, politics, self, society, human relationships. Among her characters are some of the most remarkable portraits in English literature: Dorot...

Taking place in the years leading up to the First Reform Bill of 1832, Middlemarch explores nearly every subject of concern to modern life: art, religion, science, politics, self, society, human relationships. Among her characters are some of the most remarkable portraits in English literature: Dorothea Brooke, the heroine, idealistic but naive; Rosamond Vincy, beautiful and egoistic: Edward Casaubon, the dry-as-dust scholar: Tertius Lydgate, the brilliant but morally-flawed physician: the passionate artist Will Ladislaw: and Fred Vincey and Mary Garth, childhood sweethearts whose charming courtship is one of the many humorous elements in the novel's rich comic vein.

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Number of Pages: 904

ISBN: 0451529170

ISBN-13: 9780451529176


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Recommendations from around the web and our community.

Middlemarch and The Name of the Rose - I had multiple goes at both but was just too young. Also have a theory that you can only read Margaret Drabble’s novels when you are roughly the age she was when she wrote them, which is working perfectly so far.

Middlemarch. I simply didn't understand it when I was a student! But I know a bit more about why people make unsuitable marriages and the desire to do 'good works' and leave a legacy now I am in my mid-40s. So the story is much more relatable.

I have read all replies. And while I suspect it unlikely @rachsyme is actually reviewing the suggestions, I will observe that when you cut all the books under 600 pages (most), only ONE is written by a woman. It is Middlemarch by George Eliot. And it is the correct answer.

middlemarch!! it has EVERYTHING--life, death, grief abuse, manipulation, cross-class romance, evil machinations, their defeat, polish identity, a dorky uncle with a heart of gold who attempts an ill-fated run for public office--EVERYTHING.

I went away for a hiking weekend in the woods with my then-boyfriend and two of his friends once, years ago. Broke my foot on the first day and spent the next three days on the deck, on my own, with a flask of tea, reading Middlemarch. One of my favourite ever weekends!

Agree with Middlemarch; it’s my all-time favorite novel.

A person should read Middlemarch at least once, slowly, as a grown-up. And perhaps every ten years or so if time allows. (My other Big Book is Boswell's 'Life of Johnson', but I go back to that in chunks.)

Not a recommendation because I haven’t read it but Brothers Karamazov is on my big book list. I’m starting to think Middlemarch needs to be on there given the replies

Middlemarch is a good fall/winter long book.

#1 is Brothers Karamazov, but I've decided that it's hard to parse the cultural stuff to get to why it's great, so I usually recommend #2, which is like unto it, Middlemarch...

Middlemarch (though I'm guessing there's a high likelihood you're already a fan!)

Love how many people are saying Middlemarch. I loved that book.

Middlemarch! Not least because it contains the surprisingly contemporary phrase “swamp of awkwardness” re: social anxiety.