Who wrote this book and when?
Anne Bronte published this in 1847.

Has there been a film version?

Who are the important characters?
Agnes Grey – a minister’s daughter who must become a governess to support herself
Tom Bloomfield – the son of her first employers, very spoiled and violent
Mary Ann Bloomfield – the eldest daughter of her first employers, vain and destructive
Miss Murray – the eldest daughter of Agnes’ second employers, vain and silly but well meaning
Mathilda Murray – the second eldest daughter of the Murrays, wild and tomboyish
Mr. Weston – the curate at the local church
Mr. Hatfield – the rector at the local church and one of Miss Murray’s suitors

What’s it about?
Agnes Grey is the daughter of a minister, and lives a happy and healthy life until the family loses nearly all their money in an unexpected disaster. In order to help support her mother, father, and sister, Agnes decides to take a position as a governess – first with the Bloomfields and then the Murrays. As she embarks on her career, she learns quickly just how hard it can be to teach the children of the rich – and how differently she is treated than she first expected.

Why is this book a classic/bestseller?
It’s the original Nanny Diaries – and much better than the latest version.

Do I recommend you read this book?
Yes. Especially if you enjoyed “Jane Eyre.” While not quite as dramatic and romantic, it still follows the same flow and has a little more humor in it.

How did this book make my list?
I want to read the works by the Bronte sisters.

Has it won any awards?
No.

Favorite quotes:
“Climax of horror! actually waiting for their governess!!!” – p 99

“They that have beauty, let them be thankful for it, and make a good use of it, like any other talent: they that have it not, let them console themselves, and do the best they can without it – certainly, though liable to be overestimated, it is a gift of God, and not to be despised.” – p 136

Anything else?
I never know what to expect from those Bronte girls.

Personal thoughts:
I originally thought it would be fun to read both “The Nanny Diaries” and this novel at the same time. But being so disappointed with the former just made the latter seem so much more vibrant and wonderful. Bronte has mixed the right formula of sarcasm, pointedness, philosophizing, and poetry to make this story perfection. Agnes is a character easy to relate to – as most people in the world have been made to feel inferior, have felt unlovely, and worry if they will ever find a place in the world for their own. She tells her story with ease and brings us right into her mind to experience her frustrations and small triumphs as she deals with the wealthy and spoiled.
Who wrote this book and when?
Anne Bronte published this in 1847.

Has there been a film version?
Not that I can find record of.
Who are the important characters?
Agnes Grey – a minister’s daughter who must become a governess to support herself
Tom Bloomfield – the son of her first employers, very spoiled and violent
Mary Ann Bloomfield – the eldest daughter of her first employers, vain and destructive
Miss Murray – the eldest daughter of Agnes’ second employers, vain and silly but well meaning
Mathilda Murray – the second eldest daughter of the Murrays, wild and tomboyish
Mr. Weston – the curate at the local church
Mr. Hatfield – the rector at the local church and one of Miss Murray’s suitors

What’s it about?
Agnes Grey is the daughter of a minister, and lives a happy and healthy life until the family loses nearly all their money in an unexpected disaster. In order to help support her mother, father, and sister, Agnes decides to take a position as a governess – first with the Bloomfields and then the Murrays. As she embarks on her career, she learns quickly just how hard it can be to teach the children of the rich – and how differently she is treated than she first expected.

Why is this book a classic/bestseller?
It’s the original Nanny Diaries – and much better than the latest version.

Do I recommend you read this book?
Yes. Especially if you enjoyed “Jane Eyre.” While not quite as dramatic and romantic, it still follows the same flow and has a little more humor in it.

How did this book make my list?
I want to read the works by the Bronte sisters.

Has it won any awards?
No.

Favorite quotes:
“Climax of horror! actually waiting for their governess!!!” – p 99

“They that have beauty, let them be thankful for it, and make a good use of it, like any other talent: they that have it not, let them console themselves, and do the best they can without it – certainly, though liable to be overestimated, it is a gift of God, and not to be despised.” – p 136

Anything else?
I never know what to expect from those Bronte girls.

Personal thoughts:
I originally thought it would be fun to read both “The Nanny Diaries” and this novel at the same time. But being so disappointed with the former just made the latter seem so much more vibrant and wonderful. Bronte has mixed the right formula of sarcasm, pointedness, philosophizing, and poetry to make this story perfection. Agnes is a character easy to relate to – as most people in the world have been made to feel inferior, have felt unlovely, and worry if they will ever find a place in the world for their own. She tells her story with ease and brings us right into her mind to experience her frustrations and small triumphs as she deals with the wealthy and spoiled.  This is a book I will definitely keep my eye out for so I can add it to my personal library.

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