Synopses & Reviews
Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), dreamed since his childhood of becoming a poet. However, he produced several popular works that cemented his reputation as a great novelist of the Victorian period, and earned him the admiration of later writers like D.H. Lawrence and Virginia Woolf. Hardy's stories are noted for their nuances of Romantic and Enlightenment thinking, particularly elements of the supernatural. A Pair of Blues Eyes, published first serially and then as a novel in 1873, was inspired by Hardy's courtship of his first wife. The story is about a young woman, Elfride Swancourt, who is conflicted between the expectations of her family and society, and her own desires in regards to her choice of husband. Her two suitors reflect the social divides of the time, one an ambitious young man from the country, the other an older, well established man of society. Inevitably, Elfride must choose between her parents' wishes and her own heart.