Paperback: 334 pages
Publisher: Barnes & Noble Classics (June 1, 2003)
Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.9 x 8 inches
Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (239 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #1,767,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #48 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Antiques & Collectibles > Buttons #25279 in Books > Textbooks > Humanities > Literature #34280 in Books > Literature & Fiction > Classics
I first read Howards End during the final year of my Undergraduate degree, and it quickly became my favourite book (displacing Wuthering Heights). There is something within it that really speaks to some people --- I say 'some,' because I have recommended it to many friends, and their responses have run the gamut from a fascination similar to my own, to outright boredom and frustration with the book. Personally, I felt I connected with Forster's lament regarding the loss of a sense of place and permanence in the modern world.I must disagree with some of the reviewers here, when they say that the issues Forster tackles have little relevance today. I think what attracted me to this book was Forster's examination of those very issues --- most specifically, the quandry that still plagues us today: how can we live an examined, meaningful life in the entropic modern world? I would argue that Howards End is still very relevant.Forster depicts a society in change, but also a society that is a direct relative of our own. He shows the conflicts of modern VS rural, city VS nature, business/sport VS intellect/art, and smug patriarchy VS proto-feminism. If you identified with the second choice in those four sets, then it is likely that you will very much appreciate the social commentary woven into Howards End, and you will find its sermon of "Only Connect!" something of a mission statement --- I certainly did.Really, Howards End almost reads like an allegory. The different families (Schlegel, Wilcox, and Bast) each represent aspects of a society in transition, each one lacking some vital component to make it viable.