Nick Black's Reviews > Jane Austen: The Complete Novels

Jane Austen by Jane Austen
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Oct 14, 2008

really liked it
bookshelves: read-multiple-times
Read in December, 1997

A fluency with Jane Austen is a practical necessity for dating smart girls, and hey! she's hilarious to boot. Admittedly, once you've read Pride and Prejudice you've pretty much read them all, except Mansfield Park which is just godawful and ought have been expurgated. Be prepared for a lot of lines like this, which are laugh-out-loud funny upon first reading, but become progressively less funny each time you encounter them:

Mary wished to say something very sensible, but knew not how.

Anyway, as mentioned, it's sensible and good sense both to keep a copy around, rereading it every few years to keep oneself up-to-speed on Mr. Darcy, Ms. Woodhouse and the gang, sympathetic references to The Bell Jar just not cutting it with today's literate woman. "Your ingenuousness reminds me a lot of Catherine Morland" is a phrase of no less power than ABRACADABRA! or Asmodeus Belial Hastur Nyarlathotep Wotan Niggurath Dholes Azathoth Tind-alos Kadith [0]! or that old standby, AAAOOOOZORAZZAZZAIEOAZAEIIIOZAKHOEOOOYTHOAZAEAOOZAKHOZAKHEYTHXAALETHYKH [1]!

My, what an obnoxious review! Apologies all around.

[0] Robert Anton Wilson
[1] RAW once more
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03/21/2016 marked as: read

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message 1: by leigh (new)

leigh How can you be so brutal to Mansfield Park? I've always thought it to be one of her smarter works due to the inclusion of commentary on slavery and colonization published in 1814 in what was a decently accessible work. Plus the class disparity featured is more significant I think than in Pride and Prejudice. And the references to other works of the time...If you want to name her worst I'd go with Emma!

But I could be wrong since I had to drop the Jane Austen lit class ----I was having a relapse of epilepsy and missed a certain number of classes due to seizure so when my grandmother died the professor told me I should have saved an absence for that...next time I'll consider the potential familial death prior to commencing to seize!


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