By Thomas Hardy
"Independent and spirited Bathsheba Everdene has come to Weatherbury to take up her position as a farmer on the largest estate in the area. Her bold presence draws three very different suitors: the gentleman-farmer Boldwood, soldier-seducer Sergeant Troy and the devoted shepherd Gabriel Oak. Each, in contrasting ways, unsettles her decisions and complicates her life, and tragedy ensues, threatening the stability of the whole community. The first of his works set in Wessex, Hardy's novel of swift passion and slow courtship is imbued with his evocative descriptions of rural life and landscapes, and with unflinching honesty about sexual relationships."
(Above taken from here).
I didn't enjoy it as much as I enjoyed the other Thomas Hardy book I read/listened to recently (Ttess Of The D'Urbervilles), and - being totally honest - in the beginning I wasn't sure I was going to like it at all. But it did turn out to be a reasonably good book, and I am glad I continued reading it, because it did turn out to be worth reading after all.