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The Doctor's Wife [Kindle Edition]

M. E. (Mary Elizabeth) Braddon
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £4.49
Kindle Price: £0.00 includes free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Book Description

This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.

Product Description

About the Author

Lyn Pykett is Professor and Head of English at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 609 KB
  • Print Length: 354 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1451008651
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004UJ1EPC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #7,444 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book from Mary Elizabeth Braddon 8 April 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Isabel Sleaford lives in a dream world filled with characters from novels by Dickens, Scott and Thackeray. She longs to break away from her boring existence as a children's governess and live the exciting life of one of the heroines in her favourite books. When parish doctor George Gilbert proposes to her, she accepts but quickly finds that her marriage isn't providing the drama and adventure she's been dreaming of. George is a good man, but he's practical, down to earth - and boring, at least in Isabel's opinion. After meeting Roland Lansdell, the squire of Mordred Priory, she becomes even more discontented. Roland is romantic, poetic and imaginative - in other words, he's everything that George isn't...

This is the second Mary Elizabeth Braddon book I've read - the first was the book that she's best known for today, the sensation novel "Lady Audley's Secret". Apparently "The Doctor's Wife" was Braddon's attempt at writing a more serious, literary novel, with a plot inspired by Gustave Flaubert's "Madame Bovary". "The Doctor's Wife" is not very 'sensational' - apart from maybe the final few chapters - and although it's interesting and compelling in a different way, if you're expecting something similar to "Lady Audley" you might be slightly disappointed. At one point in the book, Braddon even tells us "this is not a sensation novel!"

The focus of "The Doctor's Wife" is the development of Isabel Gilbert from a sentimental girl with her head permanently in the clouds into a sensible and mature woman. I didn't like Isabel much at all, though I'm not really sure if I was supposed to.
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43 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Better than Bovary (in my opinion anyway). 16 Feb. 2004
By S. Hapgood VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Ignore all the dry-as-dust academic blurb on the cover and in the introduction to this novel, if you take any notice of that you'll be put off reading it, and then you would be missing a treat. In "The Doctor's Wife" Mrs Braddon (never one to be put off "borrowing" a good idea) decided to do her own version of Flaubert's "Madame Bovary", and I must admit I had misgivings about this. For a good while it was hard to shake off Flaubert's novel as the stories, for the first half of the book, are so very similar. Isobel Gilbert, like Emma Bovary, is a young woman with a hopelessly romantic outlook on life, fuelled by her insatiable appetite for romantic fiction. She meets and marries George Gilbert, a promising young doctor in a small town in the fictional county of Midlandshire, and soon finds that married life isn't all romance.
About halfway through the book though Braddon's book breaks away completely from Flaubert's. Yes, like Emma, Isobel becomes infatuated with the handsome young local lord of the manor, and finds that he's not exactly immune to her charms either. But whereas Emma is quite hard-bitten and socially-ambitious, Isobel's love of romantic fiction has stymied her development, and she is stuck at the level of being a starry-eyed innocent schoolgirl, unable to cope when her admirer wants to move the relationship onto a more prosaic level.
This book is very Victorian in places and that might put off the modern reader.
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read this - it's marvellous! 16 Jun. 1999
By A Customer
Brilliant! This is a wonderful book which I couldn't put down. It's an English adaptation of Flaubert's "Madame Bovary" which has far more wit and humour than the original. It's funny, exciting and fascinating. Why on earth has it been out of print for so long?
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5.0 out of 5 stars Intelligent and interesting. 3 May 2014
By Aletheuon TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a beautifully written book which stimulated my imagination and provoked me to quite deep thought. I expected a bit of a pot-boiler. Mary Elizabeth Braddon wrote over eighty novels, most of them serialised in magazines, and some people have described her as 'the queen of sensation' because of the (for the time) sensational nature of her stories. Her most famous book was 'Lady Audley's Secret'. Actually, this book is quite different from it. Both are enjoyable, but this one is both much more humorous and also more truly tragic. One of the main characters is actually a 'sensation novelist' and M.E. Braddon has fun affectionately mocking the genre by which she makes her living.
The book describes the struggles of an intelligent but emotionally and intellectually neglected young woman to become an adult and cope with the real world. Her struggle is shown with insight and sensitivity and is sometimes quite moving.
The usual themes of a sensational novel of the time are present - death, adultery,dark secrets and terrible betrayal - but there is also (I think) an aspect deeply personal to M.E.Braddon. As a woman who earned her own living, perhaps she wanted to defend and further the rights of women in an age when they did not have as much freedom as men. In particular, she shows how women had to deny and submerge their own identity and longings in order to do their domestic duty to their husbands, since this was regarded as the role of every respectable female. As has often been pointed out, the book is like Flaubert's 'Madame Bovary', though the choices of the heroine are different and therefore, so is the outcome.
Lacking parenting, moral guidance and education, and with a dark secret in the family, Isabel Sleaford can feed her mind only with romantic novels and poetry.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Lost love
Enjoyed this book very much could not put it down.felt very sorry for Roland.he deserved his modern times she would have gone with him.
Published 3 months ago by Beryl Bromley
5.0 out of 5 stars I found it difficult to feel sorry of the female ...
I found it difficult to feel sorry of the female lead, but I am sure that was the idea of the book!
Published 5 months ago by Rachel
4.0 out of 5 stars but still is a good read. Worth pursuing till the last page
Took a long time to get to the point. This novel is not written at a modern pace, but still is a good read. Worth pursuing till the last page.
Published 8 months ago by Sarah Marie Moses
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
This story has an interesting plot to start with then some twists and turns which keep you interested until the end with a very unexpected outcome.
Published 10 months ago by Kindle Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars VICTORIAN mELODRAMA
Ireally enjoyed this book. Ihave read two or three of Mary E Braddons other titles in the past. If you enjoy Dickens you will like this
Published 13 months ago by P Austin
4.0 out of 5 stars very romantic, giving such a lovely glimpse into the old world...
I loved the romance, the singular portrayal of Isabel, who is so pure and innocent, that she deserves to be loved... Read more
Published 13 months ago by Classic lover
3.0 out of 5 stars the doctor's wife
This is not as good as some of her other work. There is a lot of repetition and it is not as gripping as I had hoped
Published 17 months ago by Joyce Crocker
4.0 out of 5 stars A joy to read
It is a book that holds your attention and the references to other literary characters is very clever and shows a really well informed writer, it really adds to the narrative. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Nettie Drew
2.0 out of 5 stars More Victorian Melodrama
I "purchased" this book on Kindle because it was the author's reworking of Madam Bovary and yes there are loose connections although the Doctor's Wife is in no way as "Bad" as... Read more
Published 20 months ago by AllieM
5.0 out of 5 stars Hidden gem
Extremely well-written novel, to the extent of several paragraphs re-read several times.Stimulating insight on the part of the author into the impact of the appearance of a... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Graham
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