‘But the cloud never comes in that quarter of the horizon from which we watch for it.’
When Margaret Hale is uprooted from Hampshire and moves to the industrial town of Milton in the North of England, her whole world changes. As her sympathy for the town’s mill workers grows, her sense of social injustice piques and she passionately fights their corner. However, just as she disputes the mill owner, John Thornton’s treatment of his workers, she cannot deny her growing attraction to him. Highlighting the changing landscape of nineteenth-century Britain and championing the role of women in Victorian society, Gaskell brilliantly captures the lives of ordinary people through one of her strongest female characters in literature.
‘“I'll not listen to reason,” she said, now in full possession of her voice, which had been rather choked with sobbing. "Reason always means what someone else has got to say."’
First published in serial format in a magazine, Gaskell’s Cranford is a delightfully light-hearted series of stories about early Victorian life in a country village.
Following the lives of two spinster sisters, Miss Matty and Miss Deborah as they gossip about the inconsequential goings-on of the community around them, Gaskell’s best-loved work affectionately comments on the role of women in society at that time and the changing face of the Victorian world.