Our lives are a story that wraps us up and ties us in close to earth. Maybe that is why the weaving words of others creating narrative can capture me. I love literature and I’m enthralled by an excellent tale. Every now and then one comes along that especially grips me. That’s how I felt about Middlemarch by George Elliot (her pen name). Rarely does a novel have me pulling out my dictionary or looking up operas, plays, statues, and art references like this one did. Throughout the pages I discovered such an array of characters. The story follows many people but touches most deeply on Dorothea Brooke, a young woman who allows herself to be imprisoned in a miserable marriage, and Lydgate, an aspiring doctor whose wife pushes him to be socially elite. While I always appreciate a complex and developed character, these two were especially transfixing. Elliot delves into the anthropology of the town of Middlemarch characters and by the end of the 800 some pages has helped you to see that people you thought you understood at the beginning may be quite different by the end of the book. This book is laden with insightful quotes like a basket of lush, nourishing, and sweet fruit. It was one of those books that had me pressing through some of the more tedious parts because I couldn’t wait to get to the end to see how Elliot would tie everything back together. You may be sure that I was not disappointed. Set in the nineteenth century this book will give you a intent look into a bygone time yet still allow you to find bits of yourself among the pages. My only regret in finishing the book is that the story had to end. Made me ponder how this earth is just the beginning of the story for our lives. We shall have eternity to watch and enjoy the greatest story unfold.
“Scenes which make vital changes in our neighbours’ lot are but the background or our own, yet, like a particular aspect of the fields and trees they become associated for us with the epochs of our own history and make a part of that unity which lies in the selection of our keenest consciousness.”