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Weighed and Wanting

George MacDonald

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .despeople, out-door servants, poor actors and actresses lived in the narrow streets thickly branching away in certain directions. Hence, most happily for her, Hester had grown up with none of that uncomfortable feeling so many have when brought even into such mere contact with the poor as comes of passing through their streets on foot—a feeling often in part composed of fear, often in part of a false sense of natural superiority, engendered of being better dressed, better housed, and better educated. It was in a measure owing to her having been from childhood used to the sight of such, that her sympathies were so soon and so thoroughly waked on the side of suffering humanity. With parents like hers she had never been in danger of having her feelings or her insight blunted by the assumption of such a relation to the poor as that of spiritual police-agent, one who arrogates the right of walking into their houses without introduction, and with at best but faint apology: to show resp. . . Read More

Community Reviews


If you've not read George MacDonald before, it may take you some time to get into the story. Even with the editing, it's not an easy read. The protagonist Hester Raymount is a likable character while her brother is a totally different character.

Jeff just finished reading this one to me. Wordy, difficult to follow at times. But, full of George MacDonald wisdom.

I am amazed to find I have read another George MacDonald book! They are a challenge on more than one level. But since I admire C. S. Lewis, and evidently he admired MacDonald, I am determined to forge ahead. It takes longer to get into MacDonald's books than we modern readers are used to, so require

A gift from my grandmother. Similar to Middlemarch in its portrayal of a woman seeking to be effectively compassionate, though with fewer characters; comparable in its level of in-text preaching, although MacDonald's is generally more to my taste than Eliot's.

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Like most of George MacDonald's novels and unlike his fairy-tales, this book is not a light read. It is wordy, appears to be full of digressions and overblown character analysis, and is increasingly given to sermonizing as it progresses. However, it is worth persevering for every inch of the way for

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