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Wives and Daughters - cover

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Wives and Daughters

Elizabeth Gaskell

Publisher: GENERAL PRESS

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Summary

Wives and Daughters is a novel by Elizabeth Gaskell, first published in the Cornhill Magazine as a serial from August 1864 to January 1866. Set in the watchful society of Hollingford, this is a warm tale of love and longing. Molly Gibson is the spirited, loyal daughter of the local doctor. Their peaceful close-knit home is turned upside down when Molly's father decides to remarry to give Molly the woman's presence he feels she lacks, but until the arrival of Cynthia, her dazzling stepsister, Molly finds her situation hard to accept. Intertwined with the story of the Gibsons is that of Squire Hamley and his two sons. As Molly grows up and falls in love, she learns to judge people for what they are, not what they seem. Through Molly's observations the hierarchies, social values, and social changes of early-nineteenth-century English life are made vivid in a novel that is timeless in its representation of human relationships. 
A novel that follows the fortunes of two families in Nineteenth Century rural England, it focuses on family relationships-father, daughter and step-mother, father and sons, father and step-daughter. It portrays the world of the late 1820s and the forces of change within it. This tender story of parents, children and step-children, mistakes and secrets was Elizabeth Gaskell's last novel and is considered her masterpiece.

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