Through a combination of naivety and social ambition, Robarts is compromised and brought to the brink of ruin.
Trollope tells his story with great compassion, offsetting the drama with his customary humour. Like all the Barsetshire novels, it is an extraordinarily evocative picture of everyday life in 19th-century England.
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You won't be disappointed by Framley Parsonage. I found it a bit slower start than other stories in the Barchester/Barseter series (I have read all 6), but eventually it picks up and presents the familiar Trollope chronicle of behind the scene clashes in ecclesiastical societies, including the clash of piety vs. prosperity among clerics. It also continues Trollope's theme of the triumph of true love over class. Trollope's books give a good fictional account of the breakdown in the British class structure even as that structure extended to the Church of England. I have enjoyed them all! Timothy West truly adds to the pleasure of the novel making the audio experience much richer than the printed books (which I have also read). He is perfect for Trollope's novels!
Timothy West makes all of Trollope's books special. As long as they are, he is such a professional in making every page and every voice interesting.
One of my favorite things about Trollope is his ability to make you squirm. You care about the characters so much that the reaction to their predicaments is physical. Thankfully, he always brings things right in the end, with lessons learned by all. It may not be realistic, but, boy, is it fun to read!
The twists and turns of the plot (or plots) of Framley Parsonage make this a highly entertaining tale. As always, Trollope provides the romantic struggles of at least one couple as a unifying thread, and their trials and tribulations are especially witty and ironic here in Framley Parsonage. His cast of characters runs the gamut, from the sublime to the absurd; Lucy Roberts, her too easy-going brother, Mark, Mark's nemesis, Sowerby, the wealthy and raucous heiress Miss Dunstable, the statuesque beauty, Griselda Grantly, &c. Trollope has a gift for imbuing his villains with likable, or at the very least, sympathetic, personalities. Haven't we all known an engaging knave, like Sowerby? Yet, in spite of the rich complexity of plot and character, Trollope keeps hold of the reins throughout and brings all to a satisfying conclusion.
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