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Emma's journey from an impoverished, working-class girl to a powerhouse is extremely satisfying, as are the various ways in which she overcomes challenges. The story is great, the characters wonderful. Ultimately, I enjoyed the book. I would recommend this book only to someone who has a lot of time for reading the book is quite long and who is willing to read through the beginning, which is mainly where all the long and technical interior descriptions are; as the book progresses, they tend to get shorter.
A Woman of Substance Is a meticulously plotted, extensively detailed, verbose and sometimes tedious saga, that overall comes to a satisfying conclusion. The character of Emma is a strong one.
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She's a calloused, strong willed, business woman at her core. She doesn't allow anyone to take advantage of her or mistreat her, including the men in her life, which is a huge thing for a no A Woman of Substance Is a meticulously plotted, extensively detailed, verbose and sometimes tedious saga, that overall comes to a satisfying conclusion. She doesn't allow anyone to take advantage of her or mistreat her, including the men in her life, which is a huge thing for a novel published in the seventies.
A lot of people complain about the vast amount of details and verbose langauge in this clunker of a book, but I actually really enjoyed the detailed descriptions when mixed with Mrs Bradford's prose. Still, it can be tedious at times. And I have to admit that although I was sad it was over, I was relieved to turn the last page and move on to something else. This book certainly isn't for everyone, but if you enjoy long and verbose sagas, you will definitely enjoy this book.
Far too long. Far too much "colloquial dialect" in the parts dealing with Emma's young life. If edited, the story could be better, but still not really memorable. This book even contains some very surprising grammatical errors which were obviously not intentional, as those in Emma and her family's tedious dialect were The seduction scene in the cave drags on and on until one thinks the characters will be to old to act upon their desires.
Hardly necessary devote that much time leading Far too long. Hardly necessary devote that much time leading up to the obvious. As period fiction the book is OK, as historical fiction it doesn't offer much. Despite Emma's pluckiness, her rise to riches is really only a matter of luck, and also somewhat implausible. I was not impressed.
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All in all, I expected more from a book that was such a best seller. Probably the most impressive work of fiction I ever read in my life. Absorbing, comprehensive and unbelievably powerful. Anyone who wants to know what revenge is about should read this novel, though it took me a long time to finish it! I for one can easily believe that the author is probably the best in the whole wide world. Everything described in such minute detail, with adverbs piled on adjectives piled on multiple subordinate clauses in every sentence.
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Everything told; nothing shown. It's maddening. A few reviews seem to suggest that it gets at least marginally better after the first section, but I just can't do it. I also gather that the story itself is half decent, so maybe if someone makes a mini-s 36 pages of insufferably bad writing was enough to convince me that I would not make it through pages of it.
I also gather that the story itself is half decent, so maybe if someone makes a mini-series or something, I'll watch it. But I cannot slog through this atrociously overwrought mess. Jan 02, Margitte added it. Read it many years ago and loved it.
Was a Barbara Taylor Bradford devotee. Just wanted to add it to my books. I've read most of her books. Aug 10, Bria rated it it was ok. This book boiled down to two words: boring and aggravating. The plot and book description initially sold me in this book, but I lost interest very quickly when the plot was covered by endless adjectives and praises about the main character, Emma Harte.
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It was completely unnecessary and annoying to have the author blab on and on about how great Emma is. How she is a genius, and how she suddenly went from being described as slightly attractive to so beautiful everybody who met her just had to have This book boiled down to two words: boring and aggravating. How she is a genius, and how she suddenly went from being described as slightly attractive to so beautiful everybody who met her just had to have her!! It was completely unrealistic and Emma grew into more and more of a fake character.
BTB tried writing about the greatest woman she could come up with, but got lost and ended up writing about an unrealistic woman. BTB gave her a perfect personality where Emma possessed every single virtue from intelligence to charity to humidity but also strength. Nobody is that perfect or possesses every great virtue. People have to have faults. Also how is Emma supposed to be a role model for girls and woman if she is unrealistic and born with every single good quality?
It is such a cop out to give the advice of "be born a genius and be attractive". Emma also had ridiculously good luck. When she moved as a single woman to a big city she just happened to meet all kinds of equally smart, nice people?? That is so highly unlikely!!! Everybody Emma worked with seemed to be a carbon copy of one another. They were all attractive which is shallow writing , nice and humble and good I was practically chocking every time BTB described some new character as truly good, filled with light They were all so two dimensional it was sad.
However the absolute worst point was around page Emma is starting her thriving business, just starting to make profits and in love with David. But oh no! Catastrophe strikes! She simply can't be bothered to marry him because his mom would be mad!?!? Even though his mom apparently loved her a couple chapters before, and Emma is supposed to be all strong and confident, but she can't even marry the man she loves cause she is too afraid their difference in religion would keep them apart????
Why not just convert you idiot????? Emma never cared about religion before this, so why not just go for the man you love and become part of his family???? It was so hypocritical and shallow. And then somehow BTB tries to make the reader feel bad for Emma! Because now she needs a husband, but is too scared to marry David so marries another guy BTB should have out some more thought into her main character. By creating this warped personal life, she made Emma into a lonely cold woman who couldn't even fight for her own love and happiness.
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If I was her child I probably would have conspired against Emma too. No wonder her children turned out to be such cold spoiled brats! They probably had no love and were all from so many different dads they couldn't keep up with their family tree either.
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I was happy when this book ended and won't read anything else from this author. Aug 10, Holly rated it it was amazing. I flat out, wholeheartedly love this book. Both the plucky Emma Hart and the sweep of 50 years of history make this a leap-from-the-pages saga. Emma's battle from poverty to high-powered business woman is a dramatic, sensational story and Bradford's prose captures Yorkshire in gorgeously. Anyone who loves a big, breathtaking story will love this.
Also, it's the best of the bunch.