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Recommended Read: A Little, Aloud With Love #3

Written by The Reader, 11th February 2017

With Valentines creeping closer we're taking up some suitably romantic weekend reading as recommended by Practice Mentor Amanda - Thomas Hardy's Far From the Madding Crowd.

A real treat for Valentine’s Day – settle down with someone you love – friend, partner, family – and read aloud this wonderful extract from Hardy’s most romantic novel.

Glass of wine or cup of tea optional!

I guarantee that sharing the moment of Farmer Oak’s proposal to the capricious Miss Everdene will be the highlight of your day.

There are so many things to enjoy in Hardy’s account but it is the wondrous depth and certainty of Gabriel’s love which always surprises me anew; a love which seems to surprise him as much as it does Bathsheba.

He comes courting with a gift: not chocolates or roses but a new born lamb. This is no sentimental gift, however, and he soon gets to the point of his visit by telling Bathsheba’s aunt:

"The lamb isn’t really the business I came about, Mrs Hurst. In short, I was going to ask her if she’d like to be married."

"And were you indeed?"

"Yes. Because if she would. I should be very glad to marry her. D’ye know if she’s got any other young man hanging about her at all?"

Thomas HardyFar From the Madding Crowd

This certainly sounds more like a business proposition than a marriage proposal but when Gabriel is face to face with Bathsheba, although he is still wants an immediate response, there is also the spontaneous addition of how he feels:

"Come, said Gabriel, freshening again; think a minute or two. I’ll wait a while, Miss Everdene. Will you marry me? Do, Bathsheba. I love you far more than common!”

Thomas HardyFar From the Madding Crowd

I know, by now, that you are really wanting Bathsheba to agree to his proposal – well you will have to read A Little, Aloud With Love to find out her response…

Suffice to say that she prompts this passionate outburst from Gabriel:

“I shall do one thing in this life – one thing certain – that is, love you, and long for you, and keep wanting you till I die.” His voice had a genuine pathos now, and his large brown hands perceptively trembled."

Thomas HardyFar From the Madding Crowd


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If you're looking for a Valentines present that will bring joy to your loved one and bring you both something special to share, why not give the gift of Shared Reading through A Little, Aloud with Love?

A Little, Aloud with Love

£12.99

Buy your copy now from The Reader.

Or order on Amazon to get quick delivery for Valentines!


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