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Henrietta's Wish Or, Domineering   By: (1823-1901)

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Henrietta's Wish Or, Domineering by Charlotte Mary Yonge is a remarkable novel that takes readers on a journey of self-discovery and personal growth. Set in Victorian England, the story revolves around Henrietta Kendal, a young woman with dreams and ambitions beyond the societal norms for women of her time.

Yonge's writing style is engaging and evocative, plunging readers into the world of the Victorian era. The descriptions of the surroundings, characters, and events are vivid and transport the reader to the streets of London or the serene countryside. It is evident that the author has done extensive research into the historical backdrop, making the setting feel authentic and immersive.

The character development in this novel is exceptional. Henrietta, as the protagonist, is a breath of fresh air. She defies the expectations placed upon her by her strict mother and seeks to find her own voice and purpose. Her determination and resilience make her a relatable and inspiring character, and readers will find themselves rooting for her success throughout the book.

The supporting characters are equally well-crafted, each with their own distinct personality and role in the story. From Henrietta's kind and progressive aunt to her overbearing and conservative mother, the interactions and dynamics between the characters add depth and complexity to the narrative. Yonge portrays the societal pressures and constraints faced by women during this time period with nuance and sensitivity.

One aspect of the book that stands out is Yonge's exploration of the themes of gender roles and societal expectations. Through Henrietta's struggles and triumphs, the author highlights the limitations placed on women and the importance of breaking free from those constraints. This theme resonates strongly with modern readers, making the novel relevant even in today's society.

In addition to its insightful themes, Henrietta's Wish Or, Domineering also features a well-paced plot that keeps readers engaged from start to finish. The story seamlessly weaves together elements of romance, family dynamics, and personal growth, creating a multi-faceted narrative that provides something for every reader to enjoy.

Although the novel is set in a specific historical period, its messages and themes are timeless. Henrietta's Wish Or, Domineering is a captivating and thought-provoking read that will leave readers reflecting on the societal expectations placed upon individuals and the importance of following one's dreams. Charlotte Mary Yonge's skillful storytelling and well-developed characters make this book a must-read for fans of historical fiction and those interested in exploring the struggles faced by women throughout history.

First Page:



By Charlotte M. Yonge


On the afternoon of a warm day in the end of July, an open carriage was waiting in front of the painted toy looking building which served as the railway station of Teignmouth. The fine bay horses stood patiently enduring the attacks of hosts of winged foes, too well behaved to express their annoyance otherwise than by twitchings of their sleek shining skins, but duly grateful to the coachman, who roused himself now and then to whisk off some more pertinacious tormentor with the end of his whip.

Less patient was the sole occupant of the carriage, a maiden of about sixteen years of age, whose shady dark grey eyes, parted lips, and flushed complexion, were all full of the utmost eagerness, as every two or three minutes she looked up from the book which she held in her hand to examine the clock over the station door, compare it with her watch, and study the countenances of the bystanders to see whether they expressed any anxiety respecting the non arrival of the train. All, however, seemed quite at their ease, and after a time the arrival of the railway omnibus and two or three other carriages, convinced her that the rest of the world only now began to consider it to be due. At last the ringing of a bell quickened everybody into a sudden state of activity, and assured her that the much desired moment was come... Continue reading book >>

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