Persuasion

Despite the kick-ass cover (which was done by Audrey Niffenegger), I’m still not a fan of Austen.

persuasion

Then why did you read it, you ask?

Well, because it was on the shelf, and I’m trying to be better about reading all of these books that have been hanging around for what feels like forever. Plus, I figure if I bothered to move them into this little apartment with me, the least I could do was read them (or at least some of them). Because some day I’m going to move again and it’s my sincere hope that I will not have to lug quite so many books back down the stairs (maybe I should be focusing on the hardbacks?).

Back to Austen. I have come to the conclusion that there are two main reasons why I don’t care for Austen (and keep in mind I’m basing these conclusions off of Persuasion and Pride and Prejudice, so I hardly qualify as an experienced reader):

  • Her main characters speak 10 words (9 of which are of dislike) to each other throughout the whole book and then profess their undying love and live happily ever after.
  • All of the supporting characters are twits.

Also, for lines like this:

“He had a pleasing face and a melancholy air, just as he ought to have, and drew back from conversation.”

Just as he ought to have?? What is up with lines like that? Who deserves to have a melancholy air, anyways? And if you’re melancholy, do you really have a pleasing face?

Erg. I always get annoyed by lines like that, and by all of the Judgey McJudgerson characters populating her novels. I know it’s supposed to be poking fun at society, but it just bugs.

Seriously. Bugs.

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10 Comments

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10 responses to “Persuasion

  1. I’ve only read one of her books – P & P – and it took me half the book to adjust to her language. I agree about that cover – it needs to be framed!

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  2. Ti

    I am not an Austen lover. I’ve tried and tried and cannot finish a book for my life. I prefer Bronte sisters.

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  3. Good heavens, but how you make me smile, lady! Never going to be an Austen fan myself. I tried so hard to read Sense and Sensibility, and god, I just could. not. do. it. But then I did listen to Northanger Abbey, and surprisingly found that I enjoyed it. Still, I’ve resigned myself that to the fact that I’m just not going to read any more of her books and will remain a cultureless heathen. I can live with that.

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  4. I need to fit the word twits into my regular vocabulary rotation, love it!

    I’ve been a fan of Austen since I was a teen and I had no idea there was a whole world of Janeites out there. I can’t call myself one of those really, I’m not dressing in regency costumes or anything 😉

    Your reasons for not liking her stuff are totally legit and made me laugh!

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  5. I’ve read all six of her main novels. This is my very least liked (and by that, I mean that I hated it, especially the love interest, who is pretty much the clinical description of a controlling abusive love interest). And I only liked two of them – P&P and Northanger Abbey (this second one only after watching the film first). I like Austen much better in film adaptation, and I don’t think I ever want to reread any of her books.

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  6. I can appreciate her much more now after living in a society that is comfortable with contradiction (which would help me get through that pleasing/melancholy sentence) and also has a rigid hierarchy. When I first encountered her as an American university student in the US, I had absolutely no frame of reference. I was baffled.

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  7. Northanger Abbey. Mansfield Park. Emma. Those are SO much better than this one. Jane has her place for polite sarcasm and mocking society without them ever being the wiser, but yes, she is an acquired taste. I’ll take all of the Austen books. You can have Steinbeck, okay?

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  8. love the comments here! I am still weighing my thoughts on Austen.

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  9. litandlife

    This one is not my favorite but P &P is so if you don’t like that one or this one, I’d definitely say if you’ve got any other Austens hanging around collected dust, get rid of them now instead of moving them later.

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