Villette by Charlotte Brontë
Star rating: ★★☆☆☆ 2/5
Summary: Lucy Snowe, having no real prospects takes a chance and moves from England to Villette to work as a teacher.
Review: Who knew that the same author who wrote my favorite book could also write something so difficult, boring and borderline torturous? Because I did not think it was possible. I’ve been reading this book since March and it’s been such a struggle to finish it.
I get the point of the book, like a single woman making a life for herself. I get it, it’s a great feminist attitude and everything but good god, it was so boring. It took forever to get to anything substantial in the novel.
Also the ending threw me for a loop. I never liked M. Paul, he was just an angry small man and I didn’t see any good quality. We’re shown he takes care of the elderly grandmother of his lost love. Congrats? I don’t care because he’s still mean and terrible. But the fact that he becomes the love interest and then DIES on his way back to marry Lucy just threw me. I kind of just sat there staring at the page like, did that just happen? The last sentence is so curt. Just “Farewell” after summing up what happened to other characters.
I was very confused too because I was under the impression she was supposed to be a teacher but it sounded more like she was a pupil. M. Paul was always checking her work for some reason? I didn’t really understand. I know, it’s a whole different time period that I’m not that well versed in but that just seems weird.
I could never really like Lucy either. I don’t know what it was about her exactly. Maybe how mean she was to Ginerva? I’m not really sure but she wasn’t appealing. Also what was with that fête scene where she was high off opium? So bizarre.
Recommendation: I don’t think this was a good Brontë novel. I was just left wishing I reread Jane Eyre instead.
Challenge Prompt: A book by a female author who uses a male pseudonym.