Can you forgive her?

Can you forgive her?

by Anthony Trollope


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Can you forgive her?
by Anthony Trollope

"Can You Forgive Her?" is a novel by Anthony Trollope. It is the first of six novels in the "Palliser" series. The novel follows three parallel stories of courtship and marriage and the decisions of three strong women: Alice Vavasor, her cousin Glencora Palliser, and her aunt Arabella Greenow. Early on, Alice asks the question "What should a woman do with her life?" This theme repeats itself in the dilemmas faced by the other women in the novel. Lady Glencora and her husband Plantagenet Palliser recur in the remainder of the Palliser series. Alice Vavasor, a young woman of twenty-four, is engaged to the wealthy and respectable and dependable, if unambitious and bland, John Grey. She had previously been engaged to her cousin George, but she broke it off after he went through a wild period. John, trusting in his love, makes only the slightest protest of Alice's planned tour of Switzerland with her cousin Kate, George's sister, even when he learns George is to go with them as male protector. Influenced by the romance of Switzerland, Kate's contriving to restore George to Alice's favour, and her own misgivings with John's shortcomings, Alice jilts her second fiancé.... Anthony Trollope (1815-1882) was one of the most successful, prolific and respected English novelists of the Victorian era. Some of his best-loved works, collectively known as the Chronicles of Barsetshire, revolve around the imaginary county of Barsetshire. He also wrote perceptive novels on political, social, and gender issues, and on other topical matters. Trollope's literary reputation dipped somewhat during the last years of his life, but he regained the esteem of critics by the mid-twentieth century.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9783732634606
Publisher: Outlook Verlag
Publication date: 04/07/2018
Pages: 718
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.69(d)

About the Author

Anthony Trollope (1815-1882) was one of the most successful, prolific, and respected English novelists of the Victorian era. Some of his best-known books collectively comprise the Chronicles of Barsetshire series, which revolves around the imaginary county of Barsetshire and includes the books The Warden, Barchester Towers, Doctor Thorne, and others. Trollope wrote nearly 50 novels in all, in addition to short stories, essays, and plays.

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Can You Forgive Her 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
hemlokgang on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Audiobook.......Phew....28 hours of audio! Why would someone stick with this? Because it was wonderful! Anthony Trollope wrote this novel which is set in England in the mid 1800s. His protagonists are all women with relationship dilemmas which are fiercely controlled by the social mores of the time. Do these women need forgiveness? Can they forgive one another? Can they forgive themselves? Does the reader think they need forgiveness? Can you forgive them? Read the book and judge as you will!
cdeuker on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Okay, I like Trollope as much as the next guy, but this one did get a little tedious. Alice is a pain in the neck; John Grey is too perfect (Helping out the scoundrel who steals his girl??? Come on!) But the redeeming qualities are there, too. George Vavasor is a wonderful villain. There are two great, shocking scenes: the fistfight with John Grey and then the encounter with sister Jane where he pushes her down and breaks her arm. Wow! I also liked Jane very much. A truly human person. Trollope also does things unheard of in Dickens. Characters make decisions--even the right (moral) decision--and then regret them within hours. Yes Yes Yes. I also liked the whole Greenow/Cheesacre/Bellfield subplot though others find it low brow. The book needed a little humor as Alice was, by and large, a stick in the mud. Now I can read more Pallisar novels and not be missing any background.(Oh, Lady Glencora is also a wonderful, fully developed character. Burgo Fitzgerald is the handsome neer do well who almost wins the girl.)I read this on Nook and listened to Timothy West on Audible. My question is: Had I not listened on audio, would I have ever finished a straight "reading" of the text? I wonder. Audio gets one through even the most boring parts effortlessly.
jmaloney17 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the first book in the Palliser series. I really liked parts of this one, but there were other parts that really dragged. There were three main stories 1) Alice Vavosar, 2) Lady Glencora Palliser, and 3) Arabella Greenow. I liked Alice and Lady Glencora, but Arabella's storyline was a bit of a bore. It is over 800 pages in small type. I think that the books will get better as I go along. I hope they do at any rate. They are all very long books.
fourbears on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is the first of six political novels that follow the fortunes of Plantagenet Palliser (¿Planty Pall¿ behind his back). Interestingly, though, this one focuses almost exclusively on domestic politics¿particularly as money and position in society affect women and families. The main character is Alice Vavasor, a cousin of Palliser¿s new wife, Glencora, a very young heiress who was pressured to marry him rather than the handsome drifter Burgo Fitzgerald (who is, if not actually a fortune hunter, clearly in need of her fortune¿which is considerable). Alice is engaged to John Grey, a respectable gentleman with an estate in Cambridgeshire, but while she loves him, he seems too perfect for her¿and maybe a bit too dull; she¿s still drawn to her reckless cousin George Vavasor, having been engaged to him but broken it off presumably because of his unfaithfulness. In addition, her ¿best friend¿, her cousin Kate, George¿s sister, is pressuring her to give up Grey and marry her brother. There¿s a third Vavasor female, Arabella, the aunt of both Alice and Kate, who figures as comic counterpoint. She¿s a well-off widow who moves to Norfolk and is courted by a prosperous farmer, Cheeseacre, and an irresponsible old soldier, Captain Bellfield, both after the money she inherited. Lady Glencora seeks out Alice, a cousin on her mother¿s side, as a friend at least in part because the minders her husband suggests for her, an elderly lady, a somewhat coarse political colleague and two confirmed spinster sisters, drive her nuts. Glencora is unhappy, sees her husband as cold and interested only in politics, not as handsome or as romantic as Burgo. Furthermore, she feels useless because so far she hasn¿t even been able to provide a child to occupy her time and secure her husband¿s succession¿he¿s the nephew and heir of a powerful Duke. Glencora is actually thinking of running away with Burgo, but is slowed down by the recognition of the awful penalties to be paid by a Victorian woman who runs away from her husband.Encouraged by Kate, Alice tells John Grey that she won¿t marry him and accepts her cousin George instead, thinking it will be interesting to help him in his ambition to become an MP, though the minute she sees George, she begins to doubt. In addition she¿s wracked with guilt for jilting Grey, one of the major sins a woman can be guilty of¿of course much worse because she has no ¿good reason¿ and because it shows ¿willfulness¿, definitely not a desirable quality in a Victorian woman. It turns out George really only wants her money, though she¿s not as rich as Glencora was, she does have a fortune from her late mother and she¿s completely independent of her father so can do with it as she pleases¿and marry whom she pleases. But she counsels Glencora against running away with Burgo. The women, both with minds of their own, forge a partnership. The society in which Alice and Glencora live is sexist and elitist. Young girls are not outright given to men as wives; they presumably have a choice, but family and societal pressures are considerable, especially if there¿s money involved. For a woman it¿s a matter of selecting the best ¿lord and master¿, difficult for women with spirit and will like these two. Trollope is charming as usual¿and funny. He clearly understands women¿and I¿m not sure most Victorian novelists did.
littlegeek on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Pretty decent, but not my favourite Trollope. Alice got annoying after a while. Arabella was annoying the whole time. Lady Glencora redeemed it for me. A very entertaining character. Too bad for her she's married to that drip Plantagenet. If the next five books are all about him, I may die of boredom.I think I prefer a novel that is more balanced between the "women's concerns" and the political intrigue. There's not much politics in this one, and it ust becomes tiresome waiting for the stupid chicks to board the clue bus. Bring back Mr. Slope!
uncultured on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I started this book based on a number of reviews on Trollope--people said he was much more grounded than Dickens, much more sympathetic and understanding than prim, demanding George Eliot...all in all rather worldly. Perhaps I picked the wrong book to start with--this book kicks off the "Palliser" sextet of novels, detailing the machinations of a group of people concerned with the British government. Trollope thought that government service was just the BEST thing a Britisher could do, and I think he himself ran (and lost) for office. So there's a sort of fascination/admiration for political figures running through ALL his novels. This volume, however, concerns itself with one Alice Vavasor, the woman mentioned in the title. Feeling rather proto-feminist, she throws over the kind, yet rather dull country gentleman John Grey (she's engaged to him). She does so after taking a trip to Switzerland with her cousins Kate and George. She used to be engaged to George, but broke it off for rather murky reasons, but it hints that he was a bit angry and gruff. Kate, however, is bent towards hooking the two up. So when Alice gets back to London and breaks up with John Grey and tells him that it has nothing to do with him or anyone else but herself, it's a little irritating. Especially when she agrees to become re-engaged to George, who is endeavoring to run for a seat in Parliament. She is pestered by a great deal of people to change her mind, and refuses to do so. But she also refuses to discuss the matter at all, threatening to leave the room or similar bratty behavior. It's certainly no one else's business, and when she gave it to a couple old biddies I was thrilled, but at other times she was really getting obnoxious about it. There's also a subplot about Kate, who goes with a rich relation to the seaside. The relation, a melodramatic widow, quickly becomes the target of two rather different men, one a farmer, the other a spendthrift. I really liked this part--it was quite comic, and the two men would fight over all these ridiculous trifles, like who got to open the wine at a picnic, because whoever did so would be complimented on said wine. There's also ANOTHER subplot about this bore, Plantagenet Palliser and his "smile-brilliantly-until-it-hurts" wife Glencora. They are badly suited for each other...actually they ended up married because the man Glencora loved, Burgo Fitzgerald, would have run through all her money and left them both penniless. He wasn't trying to hide the fact, though, and is a not-unlikeable character. I had really mixed feelings about this book. Maybe Dickens spoiled me and made me used to more excitement--Trollope mocked his (occasionally) syrupy drama by calling him Mr. Popular Sentiment--but I enjoy Thackeray, and he's not bouncing up and down like Dickens. Trollope is just...there are too many bores. And if they're not bores, they spend quite a while being unlikeable. Maybe I'm just cranky and short-tempered, though. The book resolves into a fairly happy ending, and Alice Vavasor does change quite a bit, but damn, it's not a short book. There was a wonderful section involving a fox hunt, which Trollope did wonderfully. And the book wasn't boring, it was just a sort of lusterless gossip, like the kind of gossip you might hear your grandmother whisper to you about her various acquaintances. It's amusing and passes the time, but once you kiss grandma goodbye, the stories quickly melt into a puddle and go right down the drain. And while I do think that Trollope is more understanding than Eliot--Eliot would have sent Alice off to supervise the building of poorhouses in Limehouse or something, singing secular hymns all the way--Eliot has a dry sense of humor that manages to alleviate her horrible Victorian earnestness. Though I find her stuff pretty unreadable, excepting Middlemarch. Both Trollope and Eliot were widely read, so I fail to understand how they neglected to incorporate th
DieFledermaus on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
(spoilers) In this Trollope novel, the first of the Palliser series, the best storyline was not the main plot of Alice Vavasor¿s indecision, but the troubled marriage of Plantagenet Palliser and Lady Glencora. They were a brief sidenote in The Small House at Allington and Trollope develops their relationship further. A third comic subplot features rich widow Mrs. Greenow being courted by broke but handsome Captain Bellfield and annoying, wealthy Mr. Cheesacre. This reminded me of the also comic love triangle plot in He Knew He Was Right with Mr. Gibson and sisters Camilla and Arabella. Unfortunately, a lot of the story was told from the point of view of Mr. Cheesacre who was extremely irritating. Mrs Greenow is Kate and Alice Vavasor¿s aunt who married a rich older man - only for the money, some think. Still, she was a good wife and has been mourning a bit excessively now that he¿s dead. She¿s courted by the two in several humorous scenes. Both propose to her multiple times, even right after they meet her. I feel she could have had more choice if she'd looked harder - someone with less debts and suspiciousness. Kate also plays an important role in Alice¿s story. Her brother, George, and Alice had a romance before George spoiled it with his relationship with another woman. George had ambitions to be a member of Parliament, but was thwarted in his first attempt and lost all his money. Alice later became engaged, to the eminently polite and perfect John Grey. She's been putting off the wedding for a while ¿ she isn¿t too thrilled at the idea that she¿ll just go and do what John does, living his quiet life. One thing she did like about George was his ambition ¿ she thinks Parliament a worthy goal. John has no such ideas. Modern readers can certainly see Alice¿s discontent ¿ her marriage as a loss of self. On a trip abroad, Trollope paints George as lively, interesting and sympathetic. It¿s a sign of his success in character development that at first the `nice¿ men ¿ John and Palliser ¿ are seen as unattractive and stifling but are later the best husbands for Alice and Glencora. No one would ever mistake Burgo Fitzgerald for a smart choice, but one can understand the high spirited, emotional Glencora¿s feelings. George does try to make himself amenable to Alice at first, but eventually descends into one of Trollope¿s worst characters. A lot of times, the heroine will choose the more dramatic partner over the `safe¿ guy and it¿s shown to be the right choice. However, here Trollope has both women choosing the dull option (Palliser is described as one of the dullest men around) and this is shown to be the best choice. He takes a lot of time to develop their unhappiness ¿ Alice imagines John will be boring and thinks he¿s so unemotional and controlled as to be almost dead inside, and Glencora similarly finds a want of sympathy, feeling and understanding in her husband. Alice admits she does not want to get married ¿ though she says she won¿t marry anyone else ¿ but finds it hard to delineate the reasons. Partly because she thinks she¿s the only one sacrificing, partly because Kate and George convinced her that her life would be dull and intolerable, partly because she can hardly name a fault of his. She spends most of the book vacillating between the two which can become grating. The Mrs. Greenow love triangle was bothersome because of Mr. Cheesacre, but it readily fit into a theme running through the other two plots ¿ the intersection of love and money. In many of his books, Trollope provides a nuanced look at the different, often complicated relationships between the two. Mr. Cheesacre, the annoying fool, is an all-out mercenary even though he¿s wealthy. He tries to propose on the first outing and considers Mrs. Greenow¿s money his own. Certainly he later came to appreciate her good qualities, but was desperate to get her money away from the Captain. The captain himself was also mercenary, but because h
rayette on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
my first Trollope since I was assigned (and didn't read) one of his books in college. Loved it. Want to read more one of these days.
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DavidGreene on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The first in Trollope's Palliser series
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