Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Book of the Month: May 2017



Title: Persuasion
Author: Jane Austen
Year: 1818
Rating: 5 out of 5 teacups

WHAT I LIKE AND DISLIKE ABOUT PERSUASION

This review may be a bit spoilery, but mind that the book was published 200 years ago! You've had time to catch up! :)

Above all, I liked the atmosphere, so Regency-esque, and full this time of naval characters. 

The best in my opinion were Admiral and Mrs Croft, a married couple of brave, amiable and very clever people, who soon make friends with main character Anne. Mrs Croft sets the example of a strong minded sailor's wife, who has accompanied her husband in many sea voyages. 

There are also generous Captain Harville and brooding, poetry-loving Captain Benwick. 

The heroine, Anne Elliot, is a well informed and very clever woman, she is a very talented piano player and loves reading. But her desire to make others happy usually ends up badly for herself, she was persuaded years ago to refuse Captain Wentworth's marriage proposal thinking she would make her godmother and her family happy. I didn't like this at first, but she develops her character through long years of suffering and becomes much braver. But I hated the fact that she was considered nearly an old maid at the age of 27! (I'm 27 now hehe)

Sir Walter, Anne's father, was a pretty fun character to read about, he was so conceited, but he was hilarious. I didn't like Anne's sisters, Elizabeth and Mary. Both were full of themselves too, but they weren't funny. And I couldn't stand Mrs Clay or Mr Elliot.

The romance between Wentworth and Anne was quite sad, it kept you suffering for chapters and chapters. But it was very beautiful to see how the characters went through personal changes and learned the good qualities the other had. Aaaannnddd the letter Wentworth writes to Anne!!!! It's one of the finest examples of romantic literature. 

The settings were very interesting, above all the city of Bath, England, where the last part of the story takes place. If you are familiar with the city you'll enjoy the book's atmosphere!

Some debate for Captain Wentworth and Lady Russell. Wentworth can be unforgiving to the last, that was hard on poor Anne! Lady Russell is depicted as a horrible woman in the movies, but the book makes more justice to her. She is not a bad woman, she is only prejudiced, but like Anne and Wentworth she learns from her mistakes.


A QUOTE

"My idea of good company is the company of clever, well-informed people, who have a great deal of conversation; that is what I call good company.'
'You are mistaken,' said he gently, 'that is not good company, that is the best."


EXTRA STUFF

Editions I own: The Barnes and Noble Leatherbound from 2015. It has all six novels: Sense & Sensibility, Pride & Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Northanger Abbey, and Persuasion; plus Lady Susan. But I wish I had the Vintage Classics Collection too!

When did I first read it? April 2017. I listened to the Librivox version read by Karen Savage, and read the physical book shortly afterwards.

Film adaptations: There is the 1995 one, I liked this better, but the actors looked too old for the parts. The story is more accurate, the music is better and the version is more picturesque. A more modern adaptation is the 2007 one, but they invented some of the story towards the end, when the letter by Captain Wentworth appears. 

Extra books I plan to read: Fun-fact books on Jane Austen, or some Jane Austen inspired mysteries! I know, not very academic, but it looks fun to me!

I'd love to hear your opinion! Tell me in the comments!

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