Published after Charlotte Brontes death in 1855, The Professor is unique in that it was the first book Bronte wrote, and the only one narrated by a male character, the scholarly William Crimsworth. William, orphaned at a young age, rejects the life of a clergyman his uncles choose for him and sets out on his own, eventually becoming a teacher at an all-girls school in Belgium. Once established there, he finds himself falling for a talented student, Frances, but their budding romance is threatened by petty jealousies. The final novel published by any of the famous Bronte sisters, The Professor was based partly on Charlottes own experiences teaching in Belgium.
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