Agnes Grey was Anne Brontë’s debut novel, an autobiographical coming-of-age story.
The protagonist is Agnes, the daughter of a minister who decides to become a governess in order to help her family financially. The families she encounters are not how she imagined. She finds herself surrounded by hostile environments and obnoxiously misbehaved children, causing her to feel disqualified and isolated.
It was an easy and quick read. I admired Agnes’ positive attitude throughout the hardships she endures, always focusing on the glass half-full and finally getting the happy ending she deserved.
However, I still enjoyed The Tenant of Wildfell Hall much more, which was Anne’s second and last novel. In it, her writing was bolder, and her chosen themes were ahead of her time. Agnes Grey, on the other hand, felt more mellow and predictable.
While she is the least popular Brontë sister, she has become my favorite. If you like classic literature, do yourself a favor and pick one of her books.