A Return to Wuthering Heights
A gripping and heartbreaking novel that re-imagines life at Wuthering Heights through the eyes of the Earnshaws’ loyal servant, Nelly Dean.
Young Nelly Dean has been Hindley’s closest companion for as long as she can remember, living freely at the great house, Wuthering Heights. But when the benevolence of the master brings a wild child into the house, Nelly learns she must follow in her mother’s footsteps, be called "servant" and give herself over completely to the demands of the Earnshaw family.
But Nelly is not the only one who finds her life disrupted by this strange newcomer. As death, illness, and passion sweep through the house, Nelly suffers heartache and betrayals at the hands of those she cherishes most, tempting her to leave it all behind. But when a new heir is born, a reign of violence begins that will test even Nelly’s formidable spirit as she finds out what it is to know true sacrifice.
Nelly Dean is a wonderment of storytelling and an inspired accompaniment to Emily Bronte’s adored work. It is the story of a woman who is fated to bear the pain of a family she is unable to leave, and unable to save.
Case's debut novel is a leisurely paced, highly ambitious, and somewhat overlong work based on Emily Bront 's classic Wuthering Heights. The housekeeper Nelly Dean retells the popular saga in a lengthy, chatty letter addressed to Mr. Lockwood, who briefly rented the nearby Thrushcross Grange estate before leaving for Italy and later London. Fourteen-year-old Nelly lives with the affluent Earnshaws at Wuthering Heights and plays with their children, Hindley and Cathy, when the "queer, filthy" orphan lad Heathcliff is adopted into the family. After Mr. Earnshaw expels Nelly for her dereliction of duty, her mother, Mary, intercedes to have her rehired as a paid house servant and rescues her from the attacks of her violent father, Tom. As the years pass, Nelly grows more intertwined with the Earnshaws' dysfunctional household, through her pregnancy with Hindley, his empty promise to marry her, and her miscarriage. Fortunately, she befriends her family doctor's son, the level-headed Bodkin, who sagely says to her that "you are not obliged to keep working here." Passionate fans of Bront 's masterpiece will find much to admire in Case's richly textured novel, while casual readers may find the pace too plodding and the gold-hearted Nelly too accommodating.