SueK

Greatest love story ever written?

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The Gift. I've just looked on Amazon and that could be by Cecelia Aherne (although I doubt you mean that one!), Danielle Steele (ditto!), Alison Croggon (book 3 of a series)...

 

I'm hazarding a guess you mean Nabokov?!

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The first one that came to mind was Gone with the wind, as *shock horror* I haven't read and Austen as yet. As for a more recent love story I think that The Outlander series has what it takes - well the first 4 books did anyway. I love the whole Claire and Jamie relationship it's just *sigh*:D

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I haven't read most of the famous romances, but may I propose "Fair Stood The Wind for France" by H.E. Bates. Possibly a 'romance for boys'.

 

I wonder, do readers identify more with novels by writers of their own gender when reading romances?

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I haven't read most of the famous romances, but may I propose "Fair Stood The Wind for France" by H.E. Bates. Possibly a 'romance for boys'.

 

I wonder, do readers identify more with novels by writers of their own gender when reading romances?

 

Wonderful book Bel-ami, I mentioned this earlier in this thread, as well as Love for Lydia also by Bates. I'm not sure if we do identify more with novels written by one of our own gender; on thinking about it, I guess I tend to read more books written by men - even the book that started this thread, Dr Zhivago, was written by a man.

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Oops, sorry for not reading the thread more thoroughly. I'm a great HE Bates fan, but have yet to read Love for Lydia.........it's now firmly on the list. Thanks.

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Hi, it's great to "meet" a fellow Bates fan, not many of us around I don't think:smile2:

 

What's your favourite?

 

Mine has to be Fair Stood the Wind, followed by the Pop Larkin series. I have still to read The Sleepless Moon which I'm saving for my next holiday in September and I've recently finished The Feast of July.

 

To me, it's not just about the story, I just love his descriptions, you can almost feel the sun dried grass under your feet, and hear the lawn mowers in the distance:)

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Exactly my favourites too!

 

I've just finished The Distant Horns of Summer - one of his more 'psychological' novels, but brimming with those sumptuous descriptions of the English countryside, as you describe.

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Oh good, enjoy :lol: you might actually encounter me milling around and not even know, I'm an intern there (although I won't be seeing the play myself as I can't afford to sit down and they will not give me a discount... :lol:)

 

(this is off topic sorry but...)

 

I went to see R&J on Saturday. It was a really hot day and we had a front row seat on the balcony. I collapsed during the interval :blush: but the play was BRILLIANT!

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The Gift. I've just looked on Amazon and that could be by Cecelia Aherne (although I doubt you mean that one!), Danielle Steele (ditto!), Alison Croggon (book 3 of a series)...

 

I'm hazarding a guess you mean Nabokov?!

Yes Nabokov

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Just thought of another one ..... Phantom of the Opera - a lovely story of unrequited love. Makes me sad to think about it.

 

I agree. Even if the entire tone of the novel isn't that of a "romantic novel" the feelings each of the main characters express are really intense and an example of different kinds of love a person can feel.

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It is a good topic and I will have to put my thinking cap on. I am sure there are many that qualify as great.

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Not sure its the greatest love story ever but one of my favourites has always been Jane Eyre I think its the dynamic with Mr Rochester, the finding, loosing and regaining love...also its one of my favourite books

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I'm beginning to think that Gone With The Wind is possibly one of the greatest, but not because of Scarlett - for me, Melanie Wilkes is the one who is full of love for everyone. SHe loves Ashley as a husband and partner; Scarlet as a Sister; Rhett Butler as a man who has helped her and her family in times of great need; love of cause and country; love of the men in her care as she nurses - the list goes one and on. I've never come across a character bursting with so much love!

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I also agree that 'Gone With The Wind' has to rate among the best. Melanie has so much love for everyone, never seeing any bad in anyone. She loves Ashley, her husband and Scarlett unconditionly,

 

Another great love story for me would have to be' The Thorn Birds.' I am not sure how many of you have read this or seen it though, as it is a golden oldie. Well worth a read and a watch if it is a new one to you. Great story spanning decades and a wonderful love story.

Edited by deneng

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I also agree that 'Gone With The Wind' has to rate among the best. Melanie has so much love for everyone, never seeing any bad in anyone. She loves Ashley, her husband and Scarlett unconditionly,

 

Another great love story for me would have to be' The Thorn Birds.' I am not sure how many of you have read this or seen it though, as it is a golden oldie. Well worth a read and a watch if it is a new one to you. Great story spanning decades and a wonderful love story.

I have nothing to add except I agree with both of these.

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I also agree that 'Gone With The Wind' has to rate among the best. Melanie has so much love for everyone, never seeing any bad in anyone. She loves Ashley, her husband and Scarlett unconditionly,

 

Another great love story for me would have to be' The Thorn Birds.' I am not sure how many of you have read this or seen it though, as it is a golden oldie. Well worth a read and a watch if it is a new one to you. Great story spanning decades and a wonderful love story.

 

 

sorry The Thirn Birds always makes me snigger as when they did a tv adaptation my mum and dad wouldn't let me watch it as it was racy. I do remember sneaking a copy at 12 :lol:

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I'm familiar with most of the books mentioned, and I think all of them are excellent choices. One thing strikes me; they are all tragic stories, although not all with tragic ends (I won't say which is which in case some of you don't want spoilers!) Possibly Pride & preducice & Persuation only hint at tragedy, but it is neverless there. Do you think that a good love story needs this element? Without it, does it become a romance?

 

Ian

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For me, it would be two. Classics: Pride and Prejudice. An obvious choice but it was one of the first books I read and enjoyed (think I was about 13/14 and it was part of school work). More recent book: it would have to be the Time Traveler's Wife. I get a bit weepy just thinking about that book :blush:

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The greatest love stories I've read are Wuthering Heights and Gone With the Wind. I guess the fact that the endings aren't so happy dosen't much matter since they are both so full of passion.

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This is really difficuly but if I had to choose I would say The time Travelers Wife

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I'm familiar with most of the books mentioned, and I think all of them are excellent choices. One thing strikes me; they are all tragic stories, although not all with tragic ends (I won't say which is which in case some of you don't want spoilers!) Possibly Pride & preducice & Persuation only hint at tragedy, but it is neverless there. Do you think that a good love story needs this element? Without it, does it become a romance?

 

Ian

 

Misery is just more interesting... I think that's why all the greatest love stories has a bit of it in them, not to say that all the best are tragic stories, it's just that for the greatest part of the novel the love story will have to be about longing and loss. Like the great quote by Jeanette Winterson "Why, is the measure of love loss?" You don't always know what you have until it's too late...

For me, I just find it so much more powerful to read about a painful love that one that is full of happiness. It doesn't have to have a tragic ending or any tragedy at all really, as long as something goes wrong that makes the characters experience the loss of love.

 

Wuthering Heights and Persuasion are probably the best ones in my opinion. Nicole Krauss' History of love could also be a great one.

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I don't really read love stories, they're just not my thing, but The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough totally took my breath away so I guess my money is on it : )

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There are so many, but the classics win out for me. Here are my favorites:

 

Jane Eyre...Mr. Rochester is so passionate! He makes me sigh.

 

Persuasion...Besides being my favorite Austen, I love the suspense of the love story, the way everything seems to point toward Anne's disappointment for so long, and then...well, I don't want to spoil it.

 

Northanger Abbey...Mr. Tilney is maybe my favorite Austen hero. He's the kind of guy I would totally fall for.

 

David Cooperfield...Three distinct love stories.

First, David falls in love with Little Em'ly, but grows to regard her more as a little sister and protects her honor when she is seduced by Steerforth. Then, when he is a young, immature man, he falls in love with the beautiful Dora. After her death, and after he matures, he realizes his love for Agnes, who had obviously loved him her whole life. Each time, his love was very real and deep, but it's like he was different people. And Agnes stood by him even as he mourned for Dora. Awwww.....

 

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Not sure its the greatest love story ever but one of my favourites has always been Jane Eyre I think its the dynamic with Mr Rochester, the finding, loosing and regaining love...also its one of my favourite books

 

I was going to say Jane Eyre. It's one of my favourite books as well:)

 

I'd also say Persuasion by Jane Austen, and Betty Blue by Philippe Djian. Although that one is very sad as well.

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