Before I get started, I do want to mention the beauty of the edition that I read. I received several Barnes and Noble gift cards for my birthday and decided to buy this collectible edition. The cover is soft and buttery feeling. The pages are a thick stock and have a purple edge. It is just gorgeous.
You will notice that I didn’t title this post as a review. You can’t really review a book like Wuthering Heights. The last time I read it was in high school…many, many years ago. At the time I remember thinking “why is this so great?” and scoffing at the old-fashioned phrasing and actions of the main characters. Now, I recognize the beauty of the writing and the story that is so loved and hated.
Many people consider WH to be a favorite. I can’t say that I’m in that camp although I did rate it 5/5 stars. The characters are unlikable (which is a death knell for many readers). But, really, that’s the point. Right? We aren’t supposed to like them. They are, for the most part, horrible, emotionally manipulative users. There are glimpses of light here and there but as soon as you think “oh it’s going to be okay”, Bronte turns a corner and everything falls apart. This book is the literary example of someone enjoying a good cry for no reason other than an emotional release. Or, going through a haunted house to be scared out of your wits. Sometimes you don’t want to read about flowery, successful love stories. Instead you want to feel the obsession, pain and, ultimately, the destruction of Heathcliff and Catherine.
I thought it might be interesting to put together a playlist of songs that could provide background music for a first time Wuthering Heights reader. Here are my suggestions (let me know if you can think of any other songs that would create the atmosphere of WH):
“Come To My Window” by Melissa Etheridge
“Crazy” by Patsy Cline
“Crazy” by Gnarls Barkley
“My Immortal” by Evanescence
“Possession” by Sarah McLachlin
“You Oughta Know” by Alanis Morrisette
“You Give Love a Bad Name” by Bon Jovi
“Don’t You Want Me” by The Human League