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The Return of the Native | [Thomas Hardy]

The Return of the Native

Set in Egdon Heath, a wild tract of country in the southwest of England, this is a masterpiece of dramatic tension. Clym Yeobright, a diamond merchant in Paris, returns to his home in Egdon, where he falls passionately in love with the sensuous, free-spirited Eustacia Vye. She, while in a brief state of infatuation, marries him, hoping he will take her away to a more exciting life in Paris. But Eustacia's dreams of escape are not to be realized.
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Publisher's Summary

Set in Egdon Heath, a wild tract of country in the southwest of England, this is a masterpiece of dramatic tension. Clym Yeobright, a diamond merchant in Paris, returns to his home in Egdon, where he falls passionately in love with the sensuous, free-spirited Eustacia Vye. She, while in a brief state of infatuation, marries him, hoping he will take her away to a more exciting life in Paris. But Eustacia's dreams of escape are not to be realized. Clym Yeobright, the returning native, can not bring her salvation.

In The Return of the Native there is a strong conflict between nature or fate, represented by Egdon Heath, and human nature, represented by Hardy's true-to-life characters. This is a novel that perfectly epitomizes Thomas Hardy's unique and melancholy genius.

© and (P)1995 Blackstone Audio Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (36 )
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3.2 (6 )
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  •  
    jon Northbridge, Australia 02-04-13
    jon Northbridge, Australia 02-04-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great Narration"

    Great Narration. Not my favorite Hardy work but still worth a listen. Story a bit too contrived.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Francis Corpus Christi, TX, United States 06-09-08
    Francis Corpus Christi, TX, United States 06-09-08 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    Overall
    "Why do we love such sad stories?"

    Hardy is unmatched at making the inevitable, unalterable disposition of our lives richer and more tolerable. Again, as in most of his other novels, we immediately meet a heroine/hero so flawed we know exactly where she will go and Hardy makes us want to go with her. Eustacia Vye may be Hardy's most transparent tortured soul, as passionate as she is headstrong, and he builds another Wessex community-this time the bleak Egden Heath-to frame her spellbinding, sad life.

    Men love Eustacia and Eustacia loves what men can give her: excitement, escape, and embodiment of her dreams. She, of course, is of another world, a world definately not Egden Heath, and those who love her are, for a time, lost. Hardy makes her story and the story of Egden Heath rich in character, locale and reflection on how we get where we are meant to go...R3W

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
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  • Ehab
    Southampton, United Kingdom
    4/16/09
    Overall
    "Disappointment and disaster..."

    This was disappointing. What a selection of aimless and flat characters, and such a hopelessly tiresome plot! Even Hardy?s magical descriptions of the scenery and his insights into the human condition (examples of which lightly pepper the text) can?t rescue this work. May?s voice and narration were simply disastrous?the final nail in a wretched coffin.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Stephen
    Rowlands Gill,, United Kingdom
    6/28/08
    Overall
    "An old friend....welcome back"

    Thomas Hardy's voice is unmistakeable and welcome from the first description of Egdon Heath, through the introduction of characters and the plotting - pitting man and mankind against the elements of dark and light against the backdrop of the Earth. It's many years since I read any Hardy and, having loved all of the standards and completed his various volumes of poems, the chance to listen to Return of the Native in its unabridged form was a welcome pleasure.
    There is a steady drip-drip of Hardy related material and interest. A recent biography with a reappraisal of the females in his life - and Gemma Arterton about to become Tess Of The D'Urbervilles capturing the hearts of a new generation in the Autumn TV schedules as Polanski's Nastassja Kinski did for me in my late teenage years.. What is the constant, however, is the evocation of Wessex fixed in the heart and in time. A relaxing and wonderful place to visit and a welcome alternative when ploughing between the North East and North West of England in the car.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-2 of 2 results

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