The Second Tuesday Book Club met recently in the library to discuss Anne Bronte’s novel Agnes Grey. They found it to be a good read – not enjoyed as much as other Bronte novels, but gave an insight into women and the lot of those who were educated with little means of support. Agnes gives us an understanding of the position of governess in wealthy and / or upper class homes.
Agnes is naive in not understanding what her life will be like when she leaves the comfort and moral values of her home.
The children in her charge in the first home are wild and unmanageable and the parents give no support to Agnes in order for her to both educate and control their children and then blame Agnes for their behaviour. The son abuses animals (a modern psychologist would see this as an indication of a future psychopath or murderer).
Sometimes there is the intrusion of the moralising / sermonising of the author or the conditions endured by governesses.
There is romance – no spoiler will be given!