Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

78%

29 Critic Reviews

The central figure is a girl, spoiled, selfish, dominating, wilful, magnetic, -- you hate her, you long to throttle her -- but you can't help acknowledging her fascination and admiring her spirit...The author comes from the state of which she writes -- Georgia -- and she knows her background thoroughly. She can write.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

Since its original publication in 1936, Gone With the Wind—winner of the Pulitzer Prize and one of the bestselling novels of all time—has been heralded by readers everywhere as The Great American Novel.

Widely considered The Great American Novel, and often remembered for its epic film version, Gone With the Wind explores the depth of human passions with an intensity as bold as its setting in the red hills of Georgia. A superb piece of storytelling, it vividly depicts the drama of the Civil War and Reconstruction.

This is the tale of Scarlett O’Hara, the spoiled, manipulative daughter of a wealthy plantation owner, who arrives at young womanhood just in time to see the Civil War forever change her way of life. A sweeping story of tangled passion and courage, in the pages of Gone With the Wind, Margaret Mitchell brings to life the unforgettable characters that have captured readers for over seventy years.
 

About Margaret Mitchell

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Margaret Mitchell, 1900 - 1949 Novelist Margaret Mitchell was born November 8, 1900 in Atlanta, Georgia to Eugene Muse Mitchell, a prominent attorney, and Maybelle Stephens Mitchell, a suffragette. She attended Smith College from 1918-1919 to study psychiatry, but she had to return to Atlanta when her mother died during the great flu epidemic of 1918. In 1922, she married Red Upshaw but left him three months later and had the marriage annulled. In 1925, she married John Marsh, the best man at her first wedding. He died in 1952. Mitchell joined the prestigious Debutante Club, but her public drinking, smoking and her performance of an Apache dance in a sensual costume, ended that for her. She was refused membership to the Atlanta Junior League. She began her writing career as a feature writer for the Atlanta Journal. She authored a freelance column for the paper called Elizabeth Bennett's Gossip. Mitchell is the author of the best selling novel of all time, "Gone with the Wind" (1936). In 1939, the film version was a smash hit and it received ten Academy Awards. Scarlett's original name was Pansy, which was also the book's working title, but editors insisted that it would be changed because of its use in the North to refer to homosexuals. Other early titles of the book were "Tote the Weary Load" and "Tomorrow Is Another Day." It is believed that the character Rhett Butler was inspired by her first husband Red Upshaw, and the character Ashley Wilkes was inspired by her first fiance, the attractive and idealistic Lieutenant Clifford Henry. Henry was killed in France during World War I and Mitchell declared him as the one great love of her life. On August 16, 1949, Margaret Mitchell died of injuries she received when she was hit by an intoxicated cabdriver while crossing Peachtree Street in Atlanta. She was mourned by so many that tickets had to be distributed for the funeral. Published posthumously was "Lost Laysen" (1996), which was a novella Mitchell wrote in 1915, at the age of fifteen, as a gift for her boyfriend. Donald Patrick Conroy's pen name is Pat Conroy. He was born on October 26, 1945, in Atlanta, Georgia. He graduated from The Citadel in 1967 with B.A. in English. He later used his experiences at the strict school in his book, The Lords of Discipline (1980), which was nominated for the Robert Kennedy Book Award in 1981. After teaching high school at his alma mater, he accepted a job teaching disadvantaged black children in a two-room schoolhouse on Daufuskie Island off the South Carolina coast. Many of the children were illiterate, unable even to write their own names. He taught them using oral history and geography lessons. His experience on Daufuskie Island formed the basis for his first successful novel The Water Is Wide (1972), which won Conroy the Anisfield-Wolf Award from the Cleveland Foundation and was made into the movie Conrack starring Jon Voight in 1976. His other novels include The Great Santini, The Prince of Tides, Beach Music, and South of Broad.
 
Published November 1, 2007 by Scribner. 1057 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction, Romance, Science Fiction & Fantasy, War, Self Help, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Horror. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Gone with the Wind
All: 29 | Positive: 24 | Negative: 5

Kirkus

Excellent
on Nov 02 2011

The central figure is a girl, spoiled, selfish, dominating, wilful, magnetic, -- you hate her, you long to throttle her -- but you can't help acknowledging her fascination and admiring her spirit...The author comes from the state of which she writes -- Georgia -- and she knows her background thoroughly. She can write.

Read Full Review of Gone with the Wind | See more reviews from Kirkus

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Pinkbookworm on May 17 2011

This book taught me a lot about the Civil war, and the language and the descriptions are amazing. This is a great historical read, and makes a good holiday read, as its long enough to keep you busy reading for at least a week.

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Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Pinkbookworm on May 17 2011

This book taught me a lot about the Civil war, and the language and the descriptions are amazing. This is a great historical read, and makes a good holiday read, as its long enough to keep you busy reading for at least a week.

Read Full Review of Gone with the Wind | See more reviews from Guardian

Blog Critics

Good
Reviewed by Murphy on Sep 19 2008

When Gone With the Wind came outin 1936, the Depression had been going on for 7 long years. It is easy to see how the story of Scarlett, belle of the county but reduced to scrambling for food in the ground and vowing "I will never be hungry again!", would resonate with the people who watched the hobos and maybe stood in the soup lines.

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Blog Critics

Above average
Reviewed by Murphy on Sep 19 2008

When Gone With the Wind came outin 1936, the Depression had been going on for 7 long years. It is easy to see how the story of Scarlett, belle of the county but reduced to scrambling for food in the ground and vowing "I will never be hungry again!", would resonate with the people who watched the hobos and maybe stood in the soup lines.

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NPR

Good
Reviewed by Jesmyn Ward on May 31 2012

I remember being intrigued by the love triangle, horrified and thrilled by the depiction of war, and deeply disturbed by the racist underpinnings of the book.

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NPR

Good
Reviewed by Jodi Picoult on May 31 2012

...I've read and reread Gone With the Wind a half a dozen times.

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Examiner

Excellent
Reviewed by Kristy Hamilton on Dec 11 2013

The characters almost seem to have a life of their own. One could close their eyes and see the innocent love that Scarlett has for Ashley at 16, the flames that destroyed Atlanta when Sherman did his march to the sea...to the love-hate relationship between Scarlett and Rhett Butler.

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Examiner

Good
Reviewed by Kelly Atwood on Jan 28 2011

No matter what format Gone with the Wind is enjoyed, the story of people surviving trying times, not giving up and using all the means available to them to make it to another day is at the core of this novel. It will continue to live on in the hearts of the fans...

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Book Reporter

Excellent
Reviewed by Judith Handschuh on Aug 01 1993

No matter how many times you have read it before, you need to read it again, now. And if you have never read it, this is the time to pull it off the shelf and plunge into the trials and tribulations of Scarlett O'Hara.

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Daily Kos

Good
Reviewed by disinterested spectator on Oct 25 2013

But I will say that after reading Gone with the Wind, I never thought about love the same way again. In particular, the book helped rid me of the folly of trying to make a woman fall in love with me...

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Dominion of New York

Below average
Reviewed by KIT STEINKELLNER on Oct 17 2013

... I felt queasy every time there was slavery in a scene...there is no skewering of slavery (at least not as far as I reread/remembered). It’s just an accepted institution. It’s just background for white romance, white tragedy, white lessons learned. I can’t remember the last time I felt so queasy reading.

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Mystery Scene

Good
Reviewed by Karin Slaughter on May 15 2014

The first line of Margaret Mitchell's 1939 novel is perhaps the most artfully crafted in modern literature: “Scarlett O’Hara was not beautiful, but men seldom realized it when caught by her charm…”

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Teen Ink

Good
Reviewed by DreaH on May 15 2012

If you are looking for a story that will stay with you for years to come, pick this up. Gone with the Wind is an everlasting love story, and an inspiring tale of perseverance.

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Yahoo! Voices

Excellent
Reviewed by Andrea Rowe on Jul 21 2011

Mitchell's use of imagery causes the reader to feel as though he or she is reading a genuine tale about southern history.

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Book Review Circle

Below average
Reviewed by Sayan Mukherjee on May 15 2014

An extremely overrated book in my humble opinion. This is because apart from the descriptions of military tactics and societal conditions which are extremely well researched and for which it received the Pulitzer Prize, the book has little to offer in terms of plot or ideas.

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Inverarity is not a Scottish village

Above average
on Feb 19 2012

...assuming you can get past the racism that oozes out of practically every page, and the fact that we're supposed to sympathize with Scarlett O'Hara's Yankee-hating Irish father because he's such a kind and generous man that he's only ever had a slave whipped once, is this a book worth reading? Yes, yes, it is.

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The Blue Bookcase

Below average
Reviewed by Christine Chioma on May 15 2014

The writing is dense and half-way through the book I couldn't really stand self-centered and superficial Scarlett anymore...Stick it on the shelf or Rubbish Bin? In-Between. I'd actually say rubbish bin, but it is one of those books that you need to say you've read hence in-between

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Reading for Sanity

Good
Reviewed by Kari on Apr 09 2011

Despite its length, I finished this book much faster than I expected. While I could write more -- there's so much to cover in 1024 pages -- I'll save my comments on the over-done details, and the shrewd and intelligent mind of Rhett, for my book club night.

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Book Addiction

Good
Reviewed by Heather on Jan 11 2012

...if you are one of the people who still hasn’t experienced Gone With the Wind, do yourself a favor and read it. I cannot imagine that you will be disappointed.

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The Introverted Reader

Good
Reviewed by Introverted Jen on Oct 02 2012

Grab a copy with a readable font (I do not recommend reading until your eyes hurt), and give this a try. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised by the epic story you'll find within.

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Caroline Bookbinder

Excellent
Reviewed by Carin Siegfried on Nov 18 2010

Everyone should read this book. I think it's one of the essential American literary classics. It perfectly captures an era...it gives us an indelible heroine who epitomizes many truly American traits - stubbornness, covetousness, resilience - and shows the American spirit won't be knocked down.

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Simply Books

Excellent
Reviewed by Megan on Apr 10 2011

Gone With the Wind is truly a wonderful piece of literature; it's full of romance, war, excitement, history, everything that makes a novel great.

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Rivers I Have Known

Above average
Reviewed by Amritorupa Kanjilal on May 12 2013

...despite its racist overtones, Gone with the Wind really is a fantastically told story, paced beautifully, with rich, layered (white) characters, and a protagonist I could really dislike but never forget...

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The Worm Hole

Excellent
on Sep 09 2013

Its classic nature whilst being historical fiction in itself creates ample opportunity for discussion, as you’re getting the 1936 perspective of the 1860s war. And its lessons about love and the self are eternal.

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Hope is the Word

Below average
Reviewed by Amy on Apr 17 2014

Would I recommend Gone with the Wind? Well, yes and no. It’s an engaging story, but because the main characters aren’t likeable to me, it was hard for me to see reading it as much more than a chore.

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Home Between Pages

Good
Reviewed by Rachel on Jan 17 2011

It’s an interesting position to be in as a reader – to want to recommend that everyone read the book but to also not be completely decided how I feel about the characters. It doesn’t feel like it should be okay, but it absolutely is.

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Eating Bender Blog

Good
Reviewed by Jenn on May 01 2012

re you a Scarlett or a Melanie? An Ashley or a Rhett? These are questions you may find yourself smiling about as you work your way through those 1,000 pages. And they are worth it.

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Good
Reviewed by Thompsonpen on May 15 2014

Gone With The Wind by Margret Mitchel is my favorite book. It is my comfort book when I need something to hope for, it gives me strength when I am feeling weak, and it gives me inspiration in my writing.

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Reader Rating for Gone with the Wind
93%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 2833 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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