…I’d feel this way, but I am converted. I don’t know if there’s a name for us, like the trekkies, bronies or moonies, (in case you don’t know, each refers to the fandoms of Star Trek, My little pony and Sailor Moon, respectively), whatever it is, sign me in, I am one.
What in the world am I talking about?
Jane Austen. Yup, Jane Austen. Over the years I’ve seen the movies, the references, the “Omg, she’s so great! So amazingly revolutionary for her own time!” That I never even wanted to read her. I once tried to read Sense and Sensitivity, but I just got as far as buying the book and never really opening it with the intention of starting. But, boy, how blind have I been.
Today (Actually, about 30 minutes ago) I finished reading Pride and Prejudice, the novel that could be described as (arguably) Jane Austen’s best work, I have to say that I first decided to read the book, cause I’ve been following The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, and it was kind of fun reading and thinking “Hey! They’re in the exact same part I am reading!” and noting the way they adapted marriage proposals into lucrative job offers, and such.
It’s sometimes hard for me to critique a book, cause I think I can only say it’s great. Books are not like movies in which I can point out how good or bad it is; and it’s not a matter of there not being bad books, but it’s more a thing of me, not being able to drop a movie after an hour and ending up watching it on its entirety, while I can drop a boring or bad book after a few days and never think of it again. That’s why I can only talk about books I enjoy, cause those are the only ones I end up reading cover to cover.
But Pride and Prejudice has been an exception. It wasn’t boring per se, as it was kind of confusing and hard to catch on to at first. I also have to say that having me constantly comparing both the webseries and several movies to the book didn’t help into making it an easy read. But once I got caught on, and I reached details that always confused me in the movies, I could enjoy it. And, boy, did I enjoy it (Learn from my mistake, don’t compare the books and the movies, you’ll wind up wondering if you missed a certain character in the movie, cause it’s all over the book and nowhere to be found in the movie).
My edition had 376 pages, all of which I read 120 in about 1 month and the rest 256 in the last two days. Seriously guys it’s that good. This is the very first Jane Austen Novel I ever read, but I am sure it won’t be the last one. I can’t stop feeling touched by both the couples, Jane and Bingley, as well as Elizabeth and Darcy, specially the last pair. To use the proper fandom wording: I ship them to no end and they are my OTP.
This is a beautiful story, told in a simple and clean way, you can completely see the time’s idea of romance, what a woman’s life was like, and you can even perceive a proto-feminism in Elizabeth (though the time is not right for it to be called proto-feminism, but still, I think it was too avant-garde for the time), and I even think, Elizabeth mirrored Jane Austen’s own ideas of what a virtuous woman should be to be socially respected as well as her self-respect, not because of her social status, but because of her intelligence. Quelle Woman!
I am debating whether I should read Emma, or Sense and Sensitivity next; not immediately; I am reading Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote next, soon I’ll talk about it, but I think I am going to live in this book’s universe for tonight, and tomorrow I will start reading the new one.
Oh, and just to finish: Contrary to popular belief, I think Keira Knightly was an amazing Elizabeth Bennet, and I think her Pride and Prejudice is one of the best adaptations. Also, I think Matthew MacFadyen is a damn good and handsome Mr. Darcy, and he looks even better as the character as he does with most of his other roles. They have such a great chemestry, and I even love the way the movie ends about 4 chapters before the actual book does, cause the way it concludes feels even more tender.
Enough Jane Austen! Go read it or something, and tel me what you think. I just talked to much about my opinions and how biased I am towards her books right now. So, how are you guys doing?