Press Release: The Thomas Hardy Collection
Far From the Madding Crowd, The Mayor of Casterbridge, Tess of the d’Urbervilles, Jude the Obscure
Illustrated with wood engravings by Peter Reddick
‘Hardy saw the passion in the lives of ordinary country people: shepherds, milkmaids, village musicians, and expressed it with great
power and empathy’
The text for the Folio Society’s Thomas Hardy collection of four of his greatest Wessex novels is drawn from that of the authoritative Wessex Edition of 1912, with a few minor corrections subsequently requested by the author. Each includes Hardy’s original preface and a map of Wessex, the county that he created and where he set these novels, is featured on the endpapers.
Each book contains over 30 wood engravings by Peter Reddick, who has recreated Hardy’s rural vision in his work. Reddick’s corn-dolly motifs appear on the cloth binding and the slipcase, which is made from Fragrance of Grass paper, created using an ancient Chinese paper-making method that results in a unique appearance and texture.
Hardy’s Wessex novels are among the finest examples of naturalism, a kind of realism influenced by scientific observation. His extensive research – keeping newspaper clippings and ‘facts’ notebooks – is what makes the idyllic Wessex county with its evocative descriptions of landscapes, wildlife and local tradespeople so believable.
Hardy offers no prescription for carefree rural living in these books. In Tess of the d’Urbervilles, the stunning settings offset the miserys that Tess endures simply to get by. While in Jude the Obscure, despite his best efforts Jude cannot rise above his humble beginnings. Those who do manage to rise above their station still suffer from the sins of the past in The Mayor of Casterbridge, and in Far from the Madding Crowd Bathsheba’s multiple suitors only aggravate the challenge of domestic harmony.
Bound in blocked cloth blocked. Set in Baskerville. Printed map endpapers. Over 30 integrated black & white woodcut illustrations in each book. Printed slipcase. 9˝ × 5¾˝.
UK £34.95 US $53.95 Can $68.95 Aus $78.95 per volume
For media enquiries please contact
UK & ROW Ken Hooper, Cherish PR
020 3626 0282,
US & Canada Cathleen P. Williamson