Love for Lydia

Love for Lydia

by H. E. Bates


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Lydia Aspen, a seemingly shy girl from a wealthy but isolated background, is encouraged by her aunts, her new carers, to discover the delights of growing up. They entrust her education to Mr. Richardson, the young apprentice for Evenford’s local newspaper, who is sent to their house to "get a story" about the recent death of Lydia’s father. Richardson’s access to the Aspens is unusual, as they are rarely seen by anyone from the town and hide behind their stone walls and perimeter of trees; introducing Lydia to the town’s inhabitants gives Richardson a great sense of pride. Visiting the Aspen estate also allows him the chance to escape from the great engulfing vacuum of Evensford, with its endless stretch of factory roofs and back alleys. As Lydia and Richardson spend more time together, he realizes that his initial concept of Lydia was wrong, that she is far from being shy, and is often impetuous and demanding and enjoys captivating the young men who become her companions. Richardson soon discovers that his promise to love her, no matter what she does to him, will push him beyond the pain and feelings he thinks he is capable of experiencing. One of H. E. Bates’ best-loved and most enduring books, Love for Lydia is an extraordinary tale of love and longing, set against the backdrop of 1920s decadence, and the fall of the English upper classes.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780413776532
Publisher: Methuen Publishing, Ltd.
Publication date: 02/01/2008
Pages: 362
Sales rank: 809,950
Product dimensions: 5.10(w) x 7.70(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

H. E. Bates was educated at Kettering Grammar School. He worked as a journalist and clerk on a local newspaper before publishing his first book, after which he quickly acquired a reputation for his stories about English country life. During World War II, he was a squadron leader in the RAF and was commissioned to write stories about service life, which he published under the pseudonym of "Flying Officer X." In 1958 the Larkin family appeared for the first time in The Darling Buds of May, the first of the enduringly popular Larkin family novels. H. E. Bates was awarded the CBE in 1973 and died in 1974.

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Love For Lydia 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
KatharineDB on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I first read this book by flashlight at the tender age of 12 after pilfering from my Aunt's bookshelf . Lucky for me it is as wonderful as I remember but for a million different reasons than I remembered it being. A very English story of coming of age, society clashes and love lost and found. No wonder it was made into a equally lovely masterpiece theater production.... Sigh.......
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A beautifully written love story -- an absolute classic.
jeanniezelos More than 1 year ago
Love for Lydia,  H. E. Bates   Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews Genre:  Literary Fiction, General Fiction (Adult)   I’m an avid reader, always have been and occasionally I feel pangs of conscience for not having read a “classic” book, one it seems everyone has read and loved. This book is one of those, I thought it was time to extend my reading, try something different. Sadly its one of those that others love but leave me cold. I found it long winded and dreary, and so many times I was just waiting for something, anything, to happen. It seemed like every tiny aspect had to be described in minute detail.Maybe if I’d liked Lydia it would have helped, but I didn’t. she came over as a shallow, vapid, selfish girl, one who had to be the centred of attention, the focus of all the drama, and she didn’t care about others feelings, just used people for her own needs. I really didn’t know why the men fell in love with her. I found it hard to really like any of the characters, I never really felt I understood them, didn’t know them enough to care about what they went through. I need to like characters ( or hate them) I need that strong emotion, need to enjoy what happens to them and here I just felt I wasn’t interested in any of them. I probably liked Nancy the best, felt sorry for her, but not enough to really care ultimately about her. The boys – well, I just wanted to shout “Open your eyes! See what's really going on!” But there – that's why its not a story for me, but is for hundreds of thousands of others ;-) One I now know why I didn’t read it....great for others but clearly H.E.Bates writing isn’t for me.   Stars: Two, a miss for me ARC received from Netgalley and publishers for review purposes.