Book Synopsis Censored on its release in 1841, Tess of the d'Urbervilles challenged attitudes with its depiction of a woman forced into a chain of painful circumstances by her social status and by the often cruel treatment of friends, family and the men who loved her. At once a novel of character and a sharply critical novel of society and class, Tess of the d'Urbervilles follows its heroine through a social and emotional gauntlet. The memory of abuse and the stigma of a pregnancy out of wedlock haunt Tess as she struggles with the stern strictures of society, the uncharitable attitudes of those around her and, most formidable of all, her own desires. A steady stream of critical re-interpretations of Tess has only lent strength to her standing as one of the most memorable characters in Victorian fiction. Troubling, intense and possessing a uniquely emotional brand of narrative suspense, the novel has come to be seen as not simply a classic but as Thomas Hardy's masterpiece. With an eye-catching new cover, and professionally typeset manuscript, this edition of Tess of the d'Urbervilles is both modern and readable. From the Back Cover Tess of the d'Urbervillesby Thomas Hardy tells of Tess Durbeyfield, raised in impoverished circumstances in rural England. Often regarded as the author's most compelling character, Tess's struggles to better her circumstances in the face of a rigid, judgmental society, and find love with an unforgettably challenging suitor, lead to a powerful and tragic conclusion.