Hardy's first published work, Desperate Remedies moves the sensation novel into new territory. The anti-hero, Aeneas Manston, as physically alluring as he is evil, even fascinates the innocent Cytherea, though she is in love with another man. When he cannot seduce her, Manston resorts to
deception, blackmail, bigamy, murder, and rape. Yet this compelling story also raises the great questions underlying Hardy's major novels, which relate to the injustice of the class system, the treatment of women, probability and causality. This edition shows for the first time that the sensation
novel was always Hardy's natural genre. It is based on the first edition text, and includes later prefaces and the Wessex Poems dissolved into prose.
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