This entire novel takes place in England between Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange, two homes on the English moors. There is a distance of approximately two miles between the two homes. The moors are vast open lands that may stretch out for miles at a time. Due to location and climate, there is usually a heavy fog present on the moors during the night. This presence adds dreariness and confusion to the already complex feud occurring between the two families living in the homes. The exact period of time was never precisely established but the general time period is suggested by the setting.
The use of horses for transportation back and forth between the two homes was maximized as there was a consistent flow of news between the two families. The use of candles being taken “upstairs to bed” also suggests an early time period. The actual duration of the book takes many years, approximately sixty, due to the spreading of the story over three generations. One chief character was Heathcliff. The entire story was written around Heathcliff and yet he wasn’t really the main character. Heathcliff was adopted off of the streets at a very young age. Neither of his foster siblings cared much for him at first.
Eventually, his sister grew to like him and his brother grew to hate him. As the years passed, Heathcliff’s brother Hindley continued to scar him emotionally and his sister Cathy grew to love him with such a passion that when Cathy and Hindley died in their middle ages, Heathcliff vowed to take revenge on Hindley’s son and to not rest until he lay in the ground beside Cathy. There were many instances in the story where one was compelled to feel sorry for the way Heathcliff was constantly barraged by Hindley’s acts of contempt. However, no matter how much damage Hindley did, there was no one to blame for Heathcliff’s mannerism but
Heathcliff. One example of Heathcliff’s psychological turmoil was when Cathy died. He bribed the cemetery caretaker to open Cathy’s grave after the funeral services had passed. On doing so, Heathcliff kicked one side of the coffin in so that the dust and dirt could be free to intermingle with the body of Cathy. He instructed the caretaker to close the grave and to repeat the same ordeal this time with Heathcliff’s coffin when he died. Another chief character was Nelly, the secondary narrator. (Secondary because she tells the majority of the story within the dialogue of the primary narrator.
Nelly was the only person that was present at the beginning of the story and lived to tell the see the end of it. Nelly was an important character because she was the one that raised most of the children in the story. Although the children may not have turned out the way Nelly would have liked, she still played an important part in shaping the lives of the characters and in turn the course of the story. The most important event of the story, I believe, was when Heathcliff died. With Heathcliff dead, along with Cathy and Hindley, there was no one remaining who wished to seek revenge upon nother.
Hindley’s son Haerton eventually married Cathy’s daughter, Cathy. And as most stories go, the two lived happily every after at Wuthering Heights. I would strongly recommend this book to another reader. The book is well written. It is easily read due to the manner in which the text flows. There is no need to tear apart the sentences in order to follow the story as you would in reading, for instance, Lord of the Flies. All in all the book had a good storyline, a wonderful cast of characters, a pleasant ending, and is definitely a classic piece of English Literature.