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Anthony Trollope(16 Posts)
I read The Warden and Can You Forgive Her? last year and loved both, but have just given up on the next Palliser book, Phineas Finn. I'm probably a lightweight but I just got bored with all the men and their endless meetings about dodgy election campaigns.
I think Trollope writes very sympathetically and realistically about
rich women and the way their lives were restricted by lack of control over money, having to conform to social mores, etc, and I was hoping for more of that.
I've also read The Way We Live Now ages ago and enjoyed that. Can anyone recommend other Trollopes which focus on strong women characters? Can I just skip the more political of the Palliser books, or are the others more like Phineas Finn than CYFH? What about the other Barchesters? Or any non-series novels?
I read Lady Anna a few years agao and liked it.
Yes also try the other Barchester novels. The later ones refer to some of the came characters and occasionally to ones from the Pallisers, but are much lighter and less political than the Palliser series. I skipped big chunks of the political stuff, I confess.
FYI if you use kindle, you can often get the Trollope books really cheaply as they are out of copyright and if you've never watched the TV series of the Pallisers, you must - it is an absolute classic.
Glad to know someone else still reads Trollope. I don't think there are many of us about.
Thanks mateysmum, Lady Anne looks great - I'll definitely read that one. Will also continue with the Barchester books.
I haven't see The Pallisers tv version - will try and watch that. I imagine there's a focus on the more interesting bits! I remember watching Barchester Chronicles in the 1980s(?), though can't remember much about the plot, so it won't spoil the books for me.
Trollope is a fairly recent discover for me, but I'm surprised by how modern his writing seems, and especially his women, compared to Dickens (who I also love).
The TV Pallisers is in 26 sumptuous episodes starring a young Susan Hampshire as Glencora and an even younger Anthony Andrews as her son. It concentrates far more on the relationships and the politics are in the background.
Well, men talking about politics is an accurate picture of the time!
I love Trollope and actually think he is pretty good on strong independent women, like Madame Max for example. He has a good range of characters, some of them quite stubborn and difficult to like - male and female.
One of the later Palliser novels, The Eustace Diamonds has a great heroine, quite a bad girl, and from the Barchester series A Small House in Allington has quite an independently-minded heroine.
Doctor Thorne is my go-to comfort read. Mary Thorne is not wet and annoying like Lily Dale.
I would second The Eustace Diamonds, but would suggest that it might be worth persevering with Phineas Finn. It gets better in the second half, and the events in the book inform the next two Palliser novels, the aforementioned Eustace Diamonds, and Phineas Redux, both of which are very good and worth reading.
Doctor Thorne and A Small House...are both good.
Totally agree re Dr Thorne, Eustace Diamonds and Phineas Redux.
He Knew He Was Right is about domestic abuse and really good, but not uplifting.
Thank you all. I’m going to read all of the suggestions AND give Phineas Finn another try. I might try it on Audible - maybe it will be easier to plough through the less interesting bits with Timothy West reading it to me.
Definitely persist! All Anthony Trollope is so good, you just have to find your way in. You already see how good he is - you just have to let him sink in.
I was you once, I swear
I'd definitely continue with the Barsetshire Chronicles first - Barchester Towers (the next after The Warden) is probably my favourite Trollope novel and follows on very nicely with many of the same characters. Dr Thorne, the one after, is also a favourite.
To be honest, I've struggled with the Palliser novels - I've read up to Phineas Redux, but found the politics hard going. I did enjoy The Eustace Diamonds though.
Thanks everyone. I'm having another go at Phineas Finn. I might skim the less interesting bits. And then I think I'll read the next Barchester book.
I was reading Trollope when I had to change my user name
@seasidequayside - Bit late to the thread ... but I really love Is He Popenjoy? despite its terrible title. It's got a great central female character - it's about a young women who's married into an unfortunate situation with a much older, not very sympathetic man, but by not being a wet blanket (and also having her own money and a supportive father) manages to turn it around. (The book's title refers to a less interesting subplot about whether a possibly illegitimate child is the heir to the family title).
Ive just downloaded the complete works for £1.99 . My dad was a big fan, and I've always meant to give him a try.
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