If the ambitious scope of the Tetralogy recalls the breadth of the Victorian realist novel, Byatt’s best-known book, Possession: A Romance (1990) explicitly returns to that narrative model in the setting as well as in its form. Using the strategy of alternating between two time frames — the mid-nineteenth century and the contemporary 1980s — the novel foregrounds both the unbridgeable differences between the two periods and the underlying correspondences. Richard Todd traces the worldwide success of the novel, in sales as well as critical reception, after it was awarded the 1990 Booker Prize for fiction, and suggests that ‘[t]here was clearly something in Possession that appealed to a quite astonishing variety of readers’ tastes in the British Isles, mainland Europe, the “Commonwealth” market and — unusually — the United States’ (30).
Swipe to navigate through the chapters of this book
Please log in to get access to this content
To get access to this content you need the following product:
- Victorian Echoes: Possession: A Romance (1990), Angels and Insects (1992), The Biographer’s Tale (2000)
- Macmillan Education UK
- Sequence number
- Chapter number