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'She bared her poor curst arm' A jealous lover's curse and an ingenious party trick feature in these two suspenseful stories set in Hardy's imaginary Wessex. One of 46 new books in the bestselling Little Black Classics series, to celebrate the first ever Penguin Classic in 1946. Each book gives readers a taste of the Classics' huge range and diversity, with works from around the world and across the centuries - including fables, decadence, heartbreak, tall tales, satire, ghosts, battles and elephants.
A level 1 Oxford Bookworms Library graded reader. This version includes an audio book: listen to the story as you read. Retold for Learners of English by Jennifer Bassett. A woman and a man . . . words of love whispered on a summer night. Later, there is a child, but no wedding-ring. And then the man leaves the first woman, finds a younger woman, marries her . . . It's an old story. Yes, it's an old, old story. It happens all the time -- today, tomorrow, a hundred years ago. People don't change. But this story, set among the green hills of southern England, has something different about it. Perhaps it is only a dream, or perhaps it is magic -- a kind of strange dark magic that begins in the world of dreams and phantoms . . .
"See if she is dark or fair, and if you can, notice if her hands be white; if not, see if they look as though she had ever done housework, or are milker's hands like mine." So Rhoda Brook, the abandoned mistress of Farmer Lodge, is jealous to discover details of his new bride in 'The Withered Arm', the title story in this selection of Hardy's finest short stories. Hardy's first story, 'Destiny and a Blue Cloak' was written fresh from the success of Far From the Madding Crowd. Beautiful in their own right, these stories are also testing-grounds for the novels in their controversial sexual politics, their refusal of romance structures, and their elegiac pursuit of past, lost loves. Several of the stories in The Withered Arm were collected to form the famous volume, Wessex Tales (1888), the first time Hardy denoted 'Wessex' to describe his fictional world. The Withered Arm is the first of a new two-volume selection of Hardy's short stories, edited with an introduction and notes by Kristin Brady.
Thomas Hardy wrote about the people and places he knew, and never more directly than in his short stories. They are full of the characters and incidents of his immediate experience - smugglers, healers, country musicians, local squires and parsons, the eccentric and the strait-laced.
"The Withered Arm" presents a fine blend of suspense, coincidence and gothic elements. Referring to the contemporary practice of witchcraft, Hardy has touched upon the issue of troubled relationships between men and women. Marked by striking character contrasts, a well-knitted plot and elucidative language, the story is truly engrossing. This Super Large 18pt Edition has been optimized for readers with considerable loss of normal vision who prefer intense bold 18pt large type.
Rollercoasters now extend up to Key Stage 4, rejuvenating classic texts with an appealing, accessible format and durable binding. Hardy's enthralling story comes to life in this student-friendly edition.
Word count 5,735
This book draws on an extensive archive of previously unpublished quality photos, and is a superb pictorial tribute to the final years of steam operation in the region of north Devon and Cornwall.
‘Withered Arm’ is a look at the Southern branch lines west of Salisbury and west of Exeter. There can be few who do not lament the passing of the numerous branch, main and cross country lines especially those in Devon and Cornwall with today just three short branch stubs remaining of what was once the truly expansive Southern network west of Salisbury and then west of Exeter. Author Alan Butcher comes with an intimate knowledge of several of the lines featured and so talks with authority on the routes, stations, features and locomotives used in what was the final years of operation from the mid 1950s onwards. Not only did the routes close during this time but so did many types of steam engine disappear, but examples of the Adams Radial and E1R classes are seen at work as well as Bulleid Pacifics on short length trains – the justification for which continues to be debated 50 years on. Using material from several archives including that of R C Riley, Peter Gray and Roy Vincent, this is a collection to truly savour.

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