Context: Listened to this over weeks while travelling through Korea, Japan and Australia to emigrate to Papua New Guinea.
Some Hardy I like. Others I do not. This fell into the latter category.
I just couldn’t get into the characters and didn’t really care what happened to them. Hardy’s usual penchant for beautiful descriptions of landscape and people left me cold this time… even the famous Egdon Heath.
The story was a bit predictable too. In fact, it was a little like a sad Jane Austen novel (if you can imagine such a thing. She patently couldn’t.) Unrequited love for most of the book with even something happy along the way in terms of relationships.
There’s the usual death and melancholy that I’ve come to expect from Hardy. The more I read of these types of novels, the more I appreciate Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons.