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Thomas Hardy Books In Order

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Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Desperate Remedies (1871)Description / Buy at Amazon
Under the Greenwood Tree (1872)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Pair of Blue Eyes (1873)Description / Buy at Amazon
Far From the Madding Crowd (1874)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Hand of Ethelberta (1876)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Return of the Native (1878)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Trumpet-Major (1880)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Laodicean (1881)Description / Buy at Amazon
Two on a Tower (1882)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Mayor of Casterbridge (1886)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Woodlanders (1887)Description / Buy at Amazon
Tess of the D'Urbervilles (1891)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Well-Beloved (1892)Description / Buy at Amazon
Jude the Obscure (1895)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Short Stories/Novellas

The Withered Arm (1888)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Anthologies

War: An Anthology(1969)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Oxford Book of Gothic Tales(1992)Description / Buy at Amazon
World War One British Poets: Brooke, Owen, Sassoon, Rosenberg and Others(1997)Description / Buy at Amazon
Fathers: A Literary Anthology(2011)Description / Buy at Amazon
Writers: Their Lives and Works(2018)Description / Buy at Amazon
Victorian Short Stories: Stories of Successful Marriages(2022)Description / Buy at Amazon

Thomas Hardy, born in the year 1840, wrote both novels and poetry before dying in the year 1928, at the age of 87, after becoming ill with pleurisy in late 1927. He was born to Thomas, who worked as a local builder and stonemason and Jemima, his mom.

Despite the fact that his first collection of poetry being released in 1888, he wrote poetry his entire life and considered himself to be a poet. He also began focusing more on poetry after some of his novels got negative reviews.

He was educated by his mother, Jemima (who was well read), until he went to his first school at Brockhampton when he was eight years old. For several years, he attended Mr. Last’s Academy for Young Gentlemen in Dorchester. It was here that he demonstrated academic potential and learned Latin.

Due to the fact that his family lacked the means for any university education, Hardy’s formal education ended when he was sixteen years old. At this point, he became apprenticed to James Hicks, who was a local architect.

He trained as an architect in Dorchester before moving in 1862 to London, where he enrolled at King’s College London as a student. He won prizes from the Architectural Association and the Royal Institute of British Architects. He joined the practice of Arthur Blomfield as assistant architect in 1862 and worked with him on All Saints’ parish church in Windsor, Berkshire from 1862 until 1864.

While in London, he never felt at home there, because he was always acutely aware of class divisions and his own social inferiority. At this time he got interested in social reform as well as John Stuart Mill’s works. His Dorset friend, Horace Moule, introduced him to Auguste Comte and Charles Fourier’s works. After spending just five years there (as he was concerned about his health), he went back to Dorset, settling down in Weymouth, and decided to focus his efforts on writing.

He was married to Emma Gifford from 1874 until she died in 1912, an event that had a traumatic effect on him. After she died, he made a trip to Cornwall so that he could revisit places that were linked with their courtship, and one of his collections of poetry reflect on her death. In the year 1914, he married a woman that was 39 years younger than him and his secretary, named Florence Emily Dugdale. While married to Florence, he was preoccupied with Emma’s death and attempted to overcome this remorse by writing poetry.

While he was dying, he was dictating his final poem to his wife on January 11, 1928. The cause of death listed on his death certificate is “cardiac syncope” and “old age” was listed along contributing factors.

He wrote both historical romance and literary fiction. His first novel, “Desperate Remedies” was released in the year 1871. His last novel, “Jude the Obscure” was released in the year 1895.

Another novel he wrote, called “The Poor Man and the Lady”, his first novel, remains lost and unpublished. This is after he finished it in the year 1867 and then failed to find a publisher for it. He showed it to his mentor and friend, George Meredith, who thought the novel would be too politically controversial and could damage Hardy’s abilities to get published in the future. Hardy followed the Victorian poet and novelist’s advice and stopped trying to get it published. He then destroyed the manuscript, but he would use a few of the ideas in future work.

Hardy’s work was admired by younger writers like John Cowper Powys, Virginia Woolf, and D. H. Lawrence.

“Desperate Remedies” is the first stand alone novel, which was released in the year 1871. Hardy’s first published novel, that he described as a story of “entanglement, moral obliquity, and mystery”. At the time, it violated the literary decorum of its time with romance, blackmail, and murder. It is Cytherea’s story, a maid to the eccentric arch-intriguer Miss Aldclyffe, as well as the guy she loves, Edward Springrove.

Upon finding out that Edward is already engaged to somebody else, Cytherea becomes under Manston’s influence, Miss Aldclyffe’s manipulative and fascinating steward.

This is a brilliant novel, complete with Hardy’s typical strong characterization and emotional impact, with a dramatic mystery that is wonderfully paced. This book was simply a pleasure, with some beautifully rhythmic prose and an adventurous book, for its time.

“Under the Greenwood Tree” is the second stand alone novel, which was released in the year 1872. Dick Dewey lives with his grandfather and father in the village. A new teacher comes to work at the school and Dick quickly falls in love with her, but so are Mr. Maybold and Mr. Shiner.

“A Pair of Blue Eyes” is the third stand alone novel, which was released in the year 1873. Elfride Swancourt’s tragic story, as she is caught between the gentle and handsome Stephen Smith’s love and Henry (intellectually superior and Stephen’s mentor).

Hardy penned a poignant and moving story about social conventions, love, and the limitations that women faced during the nineteenth century. He is an author able to portray women, both their state of mind and their sentiments. The guy was a real feminist that knew just how to break hearts and sadden souls with exceptional words.

“Tess of the d’Ubervilles” is a stand alone novel, which was released in the year 1891. Tess Durbeyfield is pushed by family poverty to claim kinship with the wealthy clan of d’Ubervilles and get a piece of their family fortune. Meeting her ‘cousin’ Alec, which proves to be her downfall.

A very different guy, Angel Clare, appears to offer salvation and love to her, but Tess has to decide whether to reveal her past or keep silent to ensure a peaceful future.

Readers found themselves enjoying the novel simply for the story being told and the theme of the stupidity of the rigid morals that were applied to women in Victorian England. The author portrays some unhealthy relationships well in the book without trying to convince the reader these are normal.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Thomas Hardy

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