SBR: I wanted to read a nice love story and since modern romance novels don’t seem to work for me, I ended up resorting to this 19th-century book at the recommendation of a friend. And North and South was a nice, entertaining read. What made it more interesting was that the love story meanders through the changes that industrial revolution was bringing about in the society. So you get a glimpse into the political and social effects of the changes. Although the descriptions and resolutions might be simplistic, that part of the book is valuable.

To read or not to read: Yes, if you like a feel-good love story.