Monday, March 02, 2009

Howard's End

I listened to this audio book clear back in October right before the CPSIA implosion and so I am trying to catch up with my book reviews.

I loved, loved, loved listening to this audio book. It is available for free from Project Gutenberg courtesy of Librivox because the book is in the public domain. The reader was extremely talented and did an excellent job. Well worth the download!

Howard's End by E. M. Forster was originally published in 1910. The novel exams the differences between three classes of society by intertwining the stories of three families. The lowest and middle class families want to better themselves and the highest class wants to maintain their position. The interplay between the three makes for an excellent examination of how individuals treat each other based merely on their social position and how one's choices can cause one to move up and down the social ladder.

Even though the book was published in the height of the Victorian Era, there is plenty of fodder for contemporary readers. The novel is more modern than I expected in its themes - adultery, social injustice, murder, feminism, etc. Even so there is no gratuitous descriptions of those things, which is a relief compared to modern novels.

This book deserves a 5 star rating, IMO. (Link to free audiobook above).

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