• George Eliot

  • The Last Victorian
  • By: Kathryn Hughes
  • Narrated by: Nadia May
  • Length: 20 hrs and 36 mins
  • 4.2 out of 5 stars (50 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The daughter of a respectable self-made businessman, the middle-aged Eliot was cast into social exile when she began a scandalous liaison with married writer and scientist George Henry Lewes. Only her burgeoning literary success allowed her to overcome society's disapproval and eventually take her proper place at the heart of London's literary elite. The territory of her novels encompassed the entire span of Victorian society.

Kathryn Hughes has wrought a balanced, sympathetic, and intensely engaging biography, the first to grapple equally with the personal dramas that shaped Eliot's psyche and with her broader social and intellectual milieu. A lively portrait emerges of a woman and writer by turns ambitious and insecure, cerebral and earthy, provocative and conservative - contradictions which not only express the spirit of Eliot's time, but speak eloquently to our own.

©1998 Kathryn Hughes (P)2000 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"[May's] flawless reading is perfectly timed and modulated, and flows easily. Well researched, well read and very easy to listen to." ( Kliatt)
"[Hughes] brings a sense of close familiarity with this private, inward woman....a refreshingly intimate portrait."( Kirkus Reviews)
"This work is intelligent, adept, and full of insight. Nadia May's narration is clear and precise; a welcome addition to public libraries." ( Library Journal)

What listeners say about George Eliot

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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Wonderful narrator but that's all...

I was attracted by "The Last Victorian" in the title, and the narrator, Nadia May, who is matchless; I love anything she narrates as a rule. However, this is the first book I ever purchased from Audible that I couldn't finish. Maybe the fact that I am not a fan of George Eliot is a factor, but honestly, this is one of the most boring books ever. Ms. May narrates with her usual skill, but this is like making bricks without straw. It goes on far too long & I think I gave up just b/4 the midway point. Ms. Eliot did have some love affairs but even then, this is dull in the retelling. If you can't sleep, put this one on and I would almost bet it will send you off to dreamland in a trice.

4 people found this helpful

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A Life Worthy of its Subject

Beautifully written & read w/ grace, penetration, & balance. If Eliot's work has touched & instructed you, so will this telling of the life which created it.

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petty.

depressing that this is the only Eliot biography on audible. This writer isn't fleshing out Eliot's human side; she's imputing motives at every turn without giving references, and giving every act and word the last charitable imaginable interpretation. This is scarcely more nuanced than calling her a saint and leaving it there.