Lawrence’s novel is the sequel to The Rainbow, a three-generation novel that follows the lives of Brangwen family. I never read The Rainbow, and just jumped straight into this one. Admittedly, you can do that, as you don’t need to know the happenings of The Rainbow to really understand Women in Love. If you’re a fan, though, go ahead.
I, personally, hated reading this novel. I stopped around Chapter Fifteen, giving up completely. I actually sold the book second-hand to someone else, as I really couldn’t stand it.
While I understand the book being very much a product of its time – that being Modernism – I still can’t help but feel like it falls flat compared to all the other works being produced at the time. The characters often go on long, winding, existential tangents that bore me, and make me realize how unrealistic and unrelatable they are. The characters are also very one-dimensional, having only one defining characteristic that sets them apart from everyone else. But…characters aren’t meant to be like that. They should be engaging, not boring. If it were one boring character, I would grant you that, but when it’s a whole cast of them, then we have problems.
Lawrence’s dislike for the female gender is also brought out in this novel heavily. Gudrun, Ursula, and Hermione are incredibly unlikeable, with the men being the only characters that Lawrence tries to redeem in any way. And even then I’m still not convinced that I should be giving any of these characters the benefit of the doubt.
I never finished this book, though I do know the ending. I studied this book at University for two separate classes, so I felt it was only fair to try and read it and get to know the story a bit better. Turns out, just because something’s a classic, doesn’t mean that I have to like it.
Final rating: 0/5. I tried to not throw this book across the room. I’m definitely not recommending it to anyone.
Quotes I Liked: