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The Mysteries of Udolpho [Kindle Edition]

Ann Ward Radcliffe
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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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

Ann Radcliffe (9 July 1764 – 7 February 1823) was an English author and a pioneer of the Gothic novel. Her style is romantic in its vivid descriptions of landscapes and long travel scenes, yet the Gothic element is obvious through her use of the supernatural. It was her technique of explained Gothicism, the final revelation of inexplicable phenomena, that helped the Gothic novel achieve respectability in the 1790s.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1006 KB
  • Print Length: 624 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0082RWOI4
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #6,960 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Famous Novel 6 Aug. 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Rather ironically although today this is Radcliffe's most famous novel, in her lifetime it wasn't, and nor was her masterpiece, 'The Italian'. I see from some of the American reviews that they are claiming that there is no poetry here, but I think these reviews may have been taken from another version and cross posted by Amazon, as this edition does contain the poetry. I haven't as of yet got out my treebook version of this, or my book of just the poetry from this to double check, but I think all the poetry is here.

Thanks to Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey this particular book has become extremely well known, despite the fact that lots of people haven't read it. If this is your first time reading this then I should caution you, this is a loose baggy affair and in today's world this would probably be 'tightened' up, although in the case of this it would take something away from this, possibly some of the charm. Quite a few people do describe this as 200 pages of excitement, with 500 pages of boredom, and this does have a lot of descriptive writing, as well as poetry in it. This is a gothic romance, but it is also much more than that, it contains mystery and adventure, just for starters.

There are a lot of cliff hangers and 'hooks' here that will hopefully keep you interested and wanting to read more. Ann Radcliffe's husband was scared to read this alone, but I don't think that this would be the case these days as it is quite tame. If you are into or just getting into original gothic literature, then Radcliffe's novels are a must read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars I know the Mystery! 16 Mar. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The Mysteries of Udolpho is a gothic romance of the first order. Mrs. Radcliffe takes the reader through forests filled with supersticious people, ghosts of the past and bandits. The vague sense of unease she invokes when the story moves to Italy, where the reader is aware that something is amiss but isn't quite sure what, is pitch perfect and then her dipiction of the castle to which our heroine is eventually incarcerated must be the very one on which Hollywood would come to base it's sets; full of turrets, secret passageways and a room containing mysteries so terrible they cannot be named.
If you like your gothic novel full blooded and strong, you will love The Mysteries of Udolpho.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gothic romance 11 July 2014
By Aletheuon TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have to say that, contrary to all my expectations, I thoroughly enjoyed this foundational Gothic romance. Despite Ann Ward Radcliffe's irritating love of commas inserted unnecessarily again and again in the text, this is in many ways a beautifully written book. I was completely captivated early in the novel by the descriptions of alpine scenery and drawn in by the plot, more than slightly ludicrous as it is.
It is set in France and Italy during the late sixteenth century, although it was published in 1794, nearly two hundred years after the events described.
The heroine, Emily St. Aubert, is brought up in Gascony by loving parents, landed gentry whose fortunes are in decline but who bring her up to appreciate life's true values. Now, in 1584 according to chapter 10, she is in her late teens and (of course) devastatingly beautiful, so she is now marriageable material. Her mother dies of an illness and Emily and her father become especially close; he is her guide, protector and teacher. His own health is poor and they go on a holiday, journeying through the Pyrenees to the Mediterranean, near Roussillon. The stunning, wild landscape is powerfully described. For a sick man, it does seem a rigorous and dangerous journey to have undertaken! There are storms, rugged roads, searches at night for accommodation in remote regions and suspected ghosts and supernatural happenings. They meet peasants who are usually singing and dancing and eating fruit (everyone seems to subsist on fruit) and generally enjoying a bucolic paradise. The travellers meet Valancourt, a handsome man who shares their taste for nature, music and thought. Emily and Valancourt fall in love.
Unsurprisingly, considering the rigours of the journey, Emily's father dies.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I liked it. I did, really. But, my goodness, didn't she go on! And on. And on. And on... If Ann Radcliffe wasn't long dead and buried, I'd have been tempted to contact her on Twitter and suggest that for her next excursion in to literature, she might like to leave out some of the pastoral scenes. Okay, most of them. But other than a lot of wandering around for seemingly no good reason, I enjoyed it and it kept my interest up to the final page. But that's the thing with female Gothic; the loose ends are always tied up...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a truly gothic read. 6 Nov. 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
An engagingly dramatic tale mocking the female sensibility. This is an enjoyable send up of the ghosts with a taste of evil. Twists and turns at every corner of the castle.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a treasure 17 Aug. 2013
By Mrs B
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I first heard of this novel through Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey) and hadn't realised it existed!
Thanks to Kindle I was able to actually read it and now I know what was behind the veil !!.
It is long and a bit drawn-out but I'm sure many modern writers have gleaned from this book!
Definitely worth a read.
Might even be worth putting on the syllabus as a forerunner to the modern mystery writer
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars What a marathon. A great one. But still.
I won't lie and say I liked the poetry of Emily st Aubert- for the most part I didn't see the relevance of it at all. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Natasha
3.0 out of 5 stars Udolpho
Perhaps I should have chosen a modern version of this book for an easier read. However the book is a worthwhile read and the story line keeps your attention all the way through.
Published 1 month ago by Carole
5.0 out of 5 stars am happy with this
Creepy classic, am happy with this.
Published 2 months ago by Tara
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting but too long.
Enjoyable but way too long!!!
Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Good reading
Very heady romance
Published 6 months ago by Caroline D
3.0 out of 5 stars Although the story has much to recommend it the book itself is far too...
Although the story has much to recommend it the book itself is far too long and is not always easy reading as there are so many deviations from the plot. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Mrs. Frances D. Warr
4.0 out of 5 stars If you are going to read Northanger Abbey then read this first.
I read this before reading Jane Austen's Northanger Abbey. It made reading Northanger Abbey much funnier when you can spot the influence of the gothic novel on Catherine's... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Mr Jonathan Whithouse
4.0 out of 5 stars gothic
I enjoyed this prime example of gothic horror and was glad to find it on Amazon. The story is somewhat repetitive but well worth reading.
Published 12 months ago by Ms C Chaw
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant book
i already have the paperback of this book and am roughly half way through reading it......downloaded the ebook for ease of reading......gripping story...... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Mags McInerney
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