I have never read any Thomas Hardy. Most of my readers may now be gasping and thinking "philistine" as you either are my mum or are old enough to be my mum (with the exception of a couple of you) and have a passion for the classics.
I am rather fond of period drama from time to time, my all time favourite being the BBC's most recent Jane Eyre featuring the fabulous Ruth Wilson and equally fantastic (not to mention hunky) Toby Stephens. So as the nights are drawing I do like to spend a Sunday evening on the sofa under a blanket watching a good serial drama.
Sadly I was disappointed. I don't know if the fault was with the BBC's adaptation or with Hardy's story itself. It seemed to me that there was rather a lot of fictional cliches.
1. Poor family think they have aristocratic connections and send a member of their family to ask for money.
2. Head of said aristocratic family turns out to be mad old woman so affairs are dealt with by her son.
3. Son is a "bad 'un" and has his wicked way with poor innocent young maiden.
4. No longer innocent but still young maiden runs away. And yes it turns out she is up the duff.
Only it seems that there are three more episodes! What could possibly happen... so no doubt even though I thought it wasn't much cop I will watch it again to see if it improves. Of course these fictional cliches could actually be original in Hardy's work and everyone has copied him.