Persuasion by Jane Austen

Okay, anyone on that Readalong, don’t know how you’re going to stretch that out for two months.    A nice, romantic tale about Anne Elliot who gave now-Captain Wentworth the sailor’s elbow when he was just Yeoman Wentworth, or whatever.   She loved him, he loved her, they got engaged, some Lady named Russell advised her against him, so she broke it off.   She’s regretted this ever since.   Now he’s back, and rich, and still handsome and really not inclined to even speak to Anne.   He’s flirting away with a young chick named Louisa.   But, of course, this is Jane Austen and while the course of true love doesn’t run smooth, it gets there in the end, and it is a great relief when it does so.  Hard to believe this was one of the last things she wrote.   It lacks the complexity and humor of her earlier works.   She pokes a bit of fun at Anne’s father for being vain and her sister, really for the same thing, but overall, these people are not the Bennets, nor even the Dashwoods.   Although short, the book seems to take a while getting a move on.   It definitely picks up once they reach Bath which Anne looks down on for being shallow, but it’s hard to see what’s so deep about her, except she reads Byron and Scott and understands Italian.   She’s more intellectual than the others, but she also seems to be rather a snob.   Not a snob about class like her family, but an intellectual snob.   I think what bothers me though is, she doesn’t seem to have a sense of humor.

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On the Cobb at Lyme

Persuasion read to me like Jane Austen’s fantasy of a young man she blew off in her youth, coming back still in love and telling her how fantastic she is and they all live happily ever after.   Which if true, is especially sad as Jane died shortly after finishing this and no Captain Wentworths were by her side telling her she was all that.

Still, this counts as a classic by a woman, so I’ll post it as such.

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6 thoughts on “Persuasion by Jane Austen”

  1. 🙂 You speedster, you! You just couldn’t wait for the rest of us. 😉

    I’m actually very sad that I saw the movies before I read the book. Now I have those characters in my head, instead of ones that my mind would have manufacture. Oh well! I will keep reading and hope for the best!

      1. I doubt that you’re alone. I liked the idea of a slower reading because it allows you to really think about the words and meditate on them afterwards. HOWEVER, I would find the pace too slow if I was reading only a couple of other books. Fortunately (did I say that?), I’m reading about 6 others, so 20 pages works for me. And honestly, in spite of my theory, I’m not really reading slowly. I’m leaving it until the last minute and then rushing through the section. Sigh! How to learn balance! ….. ?

  2. I love this book, I think it’s my favorite by Jane Austen. I love it because it’s all about second chances. And Anne’s sister Mary is so annoying, she’s hilarious.

    1. You’re not alone in that — I’ve seen a number of bloggers say the same thing. I did like that they were older than usual. Like life doesn’t end at 25 after all. It just seemed so alien to Anne’s character to be persuaded of anything against her inclination and it was all so vague. She couldn’t have put the engagement on hold in some manner that wouldn’t make him angry for 8 years? I love you, but we’re poor. Go make money then come back, I’ll be waiting! Something. But then Jane may have polished things up a bit if she’d lived longer. I gather that her earlier books went through numerous revisions.

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