Pamela (Everyman's library, ed. by Ernest Rhys. Fiction. [no. 683-684]) Unknown Binding – 1933
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Pamela (Everyman's library, ed. by Ernest Rhys. Fiction. [no. 683-684])
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Top Customer Reviews
My edition was 450 pages of minuscule type, no chapter breaks, thin paper. A mountain of a book to conquer, but I was determined I would finish this and be able to SAY I'd finished this.
It is worth it, such a famous and trend-setting novel. But it is frustrating for a modern reader to put themselves through.
In epistolary (letter) form, servant Pamela writes to her poverty-stricken parents of her trials beating of the advances of her (dead) mistress's son, her master, who takes a shine to the teenage employee.
Her faith, her pride, her horror of dishonour all conjoin in her letters to show us a determined young lady. Her master tries every trick in the book (outright physical assault, hiding in Pamela's room, through to kidnap!) but fainting, arguing and pleas for mercy fend off his attempts. Can Pamela's charms and determination outlast his ardour?
I did like this, but it DOES go on forever. It's hard to believe just what 'Mr B' tries in order to seduce/force himself on Pamela. And that she's successful for so long.
The story takes a turn partway and the pair emerge into a new relationship, one very much of another era, which is fascinating as much as it is hard to understand in this day and age. There are instances where I could see the influences on both Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre, with lines, characters and plot-lines that their authors could have taken from Richardson's work.
The religion is hard to swallow for a modern non-believer, with one particular line about atheists both hilarious and offensive.Read more ›
Pamela is the heroine of the novel and the waffly chatterbox writer of these letters, an extraordinarily beautiful girl of 15, with maturity of mind, a humble heart and a good soul. Throughout the first half of the novel Pamela grapples with her Master known as Mr B, who, bewitched by her beauty, and visibly torn between his pride and dignity as a member of the upper class, and his infatuation with her, attempts to destroy her chastity, using all of his power and status to siege her. The second volume in the novel is more like a traditional romance.
The novel is surprisingly readable considering it's format, in letters, and it is easy to get emotionally caught up in the plot, feeling sympathy for Pamela who at times appears to be a damsel in distress without a trusty handsome prince to save her from her tormentors. Most of the other characters in the novel are very likeable too as Richardson does an excellent job in making his characters very human.
When reading the novel, at points, it felt like it would make a great television series, due to the fact that the movement is very slow throughout the novel and the action seems to occur in isolated incidents. However this can make this read less riveting as often you will need to work at reading this novel, and at over 500 pages long this novel can sometimes be a hard slog.
In Conclusion, however, this is well worth a read, with good morals, a feel-good plot and human, likeable characters, but do not expect this book to read itself. It needs some work, but it's a rewarding read.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is actually really good. If I were you I would read it. I like the bit when Pamela writes about all the things that happen to her.Published on 22 Mar. 2013 by Dudley Ryder
Ah women, when will we learn. Another book about women's virtue and virginty under threat, scandalous. Read morePublished on 30 Jan. 2013 by Robyn
Pamela represents a journey into a completely different mind-set and value system to our own times. If you can suspend yourself in the mood of the times it is a tremendous trip and... Read morePublished on 14 Aug. 2011 by Mr. Michael Richard Harris
Pamela is one of those books that always has to appear on undergraduate courses on the history of the novel because it was so influential but it is undoubtedly a book which hasn't... Read morePublished on 10 Sept. 2010 by Roman Clodia
I was so excited before I read this book. It was my first year at university and I was eager to discover the gems of 18th century literature. This is not one of them. Read morePublished on 26 Sept. 2008 by the
This book is completely unrealistic, and it doesn't surprise me that a man wrote it!
It tells the story of a girl (Pamela) falling in love with her would-be raper... Read more