Thursday, July 2, 2009

Agnes Gray - Anne Bronte

agnes grey
anne bronte
c. 1847
219 pages
completed 7/2/2009

read for: classics challenge, penguin classics, 1001 books

*may contain spoilers*

Agnes Grey tells the story of our title character Agnes as she goes off looking for adventure by becoming a governess to first one and then another family of unruly, uneducated, ungrateful children.

This book was surprisingly readable. I was expecting it to be somewhat stuffy, but I didn't find that at all. The voice of Agnes was incredibly engaging and confiding.

The ladies and gentlemen that Agnes works for are terrifying. Are they really that out of touch with the realities of their children? How can these parents just have no idea that their children are such terrors? I cannot understand how these parents can spoil their children, can pretty much tell Agnes only to make them do what they want to do, and yet still expect Agnes to have control over them. The children themselves were pretty terrifying as well. The little boy from the first family who liked to torture animals is going to grow up to be psychopath. Did you know torturing animals is the first step in the cycle of domestic violence?

And the girls from the second family were not that much better. I wanted to scream when Rosalie said that vanity is the most essential attribute of our sex. Wow. How were thoughts of this nature ever seen as attractive and desirable? Thank God for the Mr. Westons and Mr. Darcys of this time who wanted women of sense. I loved Agnes' quiet longing for Mr. Weston. It's so sweet and simple, her love for this man. And he's so kind to her despite the example set by everyone else in the Murray household where she works.

This was a bit of a rambly review.

Sorry. 5/5

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