Wuthering Heights review, characters and summary

Wuthering Heights

Introduction

Wuthering Heights was published in December 1847. Its author is Emily Brontë, pseudonym Ellis Bell. In the beginning, critics weren’t much of a fan of the book. However, people started appreciating it with time and considered it one of the English language’s finest novels.
The tale recounts an onlooker’s retroactive and also includes short narratives.

About The Author

Emily Jane Brontë was born on the 20th of July, 1818, at Thornton, Yorkshire, England. She was a poet and published only one novel, Wuthering Heights.

She was born to an Irishman father, Patrick Brontë. Unfortunately, her mother died in 1821, and as kids, they were mostly on their own. Emily’s older sisters, Maria and Elizabeth, also passed away young. Beside them, her other siblings were Patrick Branwell, Charlotte, and Anne.

Later, Emily with Charlotte, and Anne published a volume of verse jointly, Poems by Currer, Ellis and Acton Bell, which contained Emily’s 21 poems.
After the publication of her first and only novel, Emily’s health started to deteriorate. Sadly, she died in December 1848 of tuberculosis after suffering great pain.

Characters

The main character of the novel is Heathcliff. He is violent and cruel and was also orphaned when he was a little kid. Catherine Earnshaw is the love of his life. As a child, she got everything she wanted and is impulsive and wild. Then there is Catherine’s husband, Edgar Linton. The well-mannered guy is Heathcliff’s nemesis.

Well, the primary narrator of the novel is Ellen (Nelly) Dean, Catherine’s servant.

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Other characters besides the ones mentioned above are; Cathy Linton (Catherine and Edgar’s daughter), Isabella (Edgar’s sister), Linton Heathcliff (Isabella’s son with Heathcliff), Hareton Earnshaw (nephew of Catherine), Lockwood (the story’s catalyst), Mr. & Mrs. Earnshaw and Hindley Earnshaw, (Catherine’s parents and brother), Joseph (a Wuthering Heights’ elderly servant), Mr. and Mrs. Linton (Edgar’s parents) and Zillah (Heathcliff’s housekeeper.)

Summary

The story of Wuthering Heights begins with Lockwood visiting his landlord’s home. His curiosity awakens after some frequent visits and a psychic encounter. Later he requests Nelly to tell him the Heathcliff’s history.

Well, the owner of Wuthering Heights and a Yorkshire farmer, Mr. Earnshaw, brings Heathcliff, an orphan. He raises him alongside his two kids, Catherine and Hindley. Among them, Catherine adored Heathcliff, whereas her brother detested him as he was liked very much by their father. And after Mr. Earnshaw dies, Hindley does all in his might to clobber Heathcliff.

Then comes Edgar and Isabella, the Lintons, who live at Thrushcross Grange. Catherine gets along well with them, but Heathcliff is shunned. He feels jealous seeing Catherine spending more time with Edgar. Heathcliff leaves for three years, knowing Catherine can’t marry him.

After the protagonist’s departure, Catherine marries Edgar, but their marriage is short-lived. When Heathcliff returns, the relationships get more complicated as he marries Edgar’s sister Isabella and lives with Hareton and Hindley. After the marriage of Isabella and Heathcliff, Catherine becomes a mother and dies.

Seeing his loved one’s death, Heathcliff promises to destroy everything Edgar loves after gaining Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange’s control. He succeeds later after 17 years when Cathy marries Linton, his son. When Edgar dies, the control of Grange is shifted to Heathcliff.

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After Catherine’s demise, her ghost haunts Heathcliff. Nevertheless, in the end, the soulmates unite in death, and in a turn of events, Cathy and Hareton prepare for their marriage.

Themes

Love and hate are one of the major themes of the novel. The love may not be an erotic one, but it has the components of romantic and brotherly love. Well, Heathcliff and Catherine’s love seems to have been born not out of sexual desires but mutiny.

The theme of revenge can be seen clearly, firstly in Hindley’s disapprovement of Heathcliff and later in Heathcliff’s resentment towards Edgar. Some other themes throughout the story are class, civilization, supernatural, and nature.

Strength and Weakness

The lead character, Heathcliff’s character development is dynamic from the start to the end. Furthermore, the alternation in narration enhances the story.
Despite that, at some points, the narration gets puzzling. Additionally, the good and evil’s differences are understood yet aren’t easily implemented in the characters, including their actions.

My Take on The Book

From its poetic presentation, the novel is different from the books of that period. Plus, the unusual structure is also compelling. Having received 3.9/5 from· Goodreads and 4/5 from Common Sense Media, the book has done justice to the tragedy and gothic genre.

Wuthering Heights