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Mansfield Park

3.84  ·  Rating details ·  228,086 Ratings  ·  7,182 Reviews
'We have all been more or less to blame ... every one of us, excepting Fanny'

Taken from the poverty of her parents' home in Portsmouth, Fanny Price is brought up with her rich cousins at Mansfield Park, acutely aware of her humble rank and with her cousin Edmund as her sole ally. During her uncle's absence in Antigua, the Crawford's arrive in the neighbourhood bringing w
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Paperback, Penguin English Library, 504 pages
Published October 25th 2012 by Penguin Books (first published 1814)
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Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all) She's not "out of it"--she has opted out. Austen says as much: she's bone idle, and prefers doing needlework and petting her dog to actively…moreShe's not "out of it"--she has opted out. Austen says as much: she's bone idle, and prefers doing needlework and petting her dog to actively participating in life. After all, she married a rich man, that's what servants are for. There are plenty of wealthy women in the world today who sit around watching TV, going to the hairdresser, lunching--and little else. They pay other people to take care of their houses, their kids, their meals and clothes. Their only mission in life is to be as comfortable and fashionable as possible. You don't have to be disabled to be brain-dead. You don't even have to be rich, to be selfish and lazy. Today she'd sit glued to reality TV all day, if she were working class, or reading one Harlequin Presents after another, or something.

Sir Thomas is so wrapped up in his business that he hardly notices his own children are there unless they, like Tom, get so into debt or make such fools of themselves that he has to pay attention. Again, like plenty of workaholics the world over in our day and age he knows the servants and busybody Aunt Norris will take up the slack. Wifey doesn't bother her pretty little head, but then she doesn't have to--he can afford it. Just like plenty of absentee parents today--they bring in the money and find somebody to take care of things. Au pairs, nannys, housekeepers, schools--whoever.(less)
Mary Catelli The Hapsburgs were in trouble not because of a first cousin marriage but because they had been interbreeding for generations. One is not that…moreThe Hapsburgs were in trouble not because of a first cousin marriage but because they had been interbreeding for generations. One is not that dangerous.(less)

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Greyeyedminerva
Jul 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was astounded to find that many of the reviews on this site criticize this book for the main character, Fanny Price, & her timidity and morality. It is very different from Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility, whose smart, sensible heroines make the novels, but I actually enjoyed this book immensely for its social commentary.

Most of the characters in this book singlemindedly pursue wealth, status, and pleasure regardless of their personal and moral costs. Their antics are pretty
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Kelly
Jun 04, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: only hardcore Austen fans
(This is usually the part where I offer abject apologies for my review's length, but I don't feel like it this time. It's long. Continued on the comments section. You have been duly notified.)

Ah, Fanny Price. We meet again.

Our previous meeting was…. How shall I say? Underwhelming. Unsatisfying. …Lacking is really the word I’m looking for. There was something missing in every encounter I had with you that made me want to tear my hair out.

Now I know why, and it was entirely to do with what I brou
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Sherwood Smith
Most Austen aficionados agree that Pride and Prejudice is a great book. Jane Austen thought it might be too "light and bright and sparkling"--that its comedy might outshine its serious points--but its continued popularity today indicates that her recipe for brilliance contained just the right ingredients.

Yet a lot of modern readers loathe Mansfield Park, despite its being thought by others the greatest of all Austen's work. What's going on here?

Frequently leveled criticisms:
* Fanny is a stick
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Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Upping my rating from 3 stars to 4 on reread. Mansfield Park isn't as easy to love as most of Jane Austen's other novels (I'm still a little on the fence with Emma, but I'm going to give her another shot too one of these days years). But it has a lot of insights to offer into the personalities, strengths and weaknesses of not just Fanny, but all of the other characters who live in and around Mansfield Park, a country manor in England. Like Kelly says in her truly excellent review of this book, i ...more
Henry Avila
Jun 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Fanny Price's mother had two sisters as beautiful as she, one married an affluent gentleman Sir Thomas Bertram, and everyone said this would enable her siblings, to do the same. Nevertheless little England hasn't enough rich men, to accommodate deserving ladies. Another married a respectable quiet clergyman, with little money. Sir Thomas's friend, Reverend Norris good yet dull , gets him a church and a cottage in Mansfield Park, Northampton, on his vast estate. The kind Sir Thomas is very willin ...more
Eve
Jun 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, read-2015
“The best things in life are free,
but you can give them to the birds and bees.
I want money.” – The Flying Lizzards


 photo image.jpg1_zpsrlvlrb6t.jpg

This is the last of Austen’s books that I’ve finally finished, a goal I’ve been working towards since I was sixteen. I saved this one for last because although it’s one of my favorite films, it seemed like it would be a clunky and slow-paced novel. I was definitely wrong. Maybe it’s the timing of it. This book will forever remind me of my grandmother’s passing. She passed away two w
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April (Aprilius Maximus)
You can't see me right now but i'm rolling my eyes so hard i can see the back of my head.
Holly Goguen
Feb 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Holly by: hollygoguen@gmail.com
Shelves: literature, favorites
I have seen no small amount of reviews toting Fanny Price as Austen's least likable heroine, and to be honest...I'm not sure where they get that impression from. Granted, Fanny's characteristics often shine by what they are not, next to the undesirable character traits of those around her.....but does this appropriateness of demeanor, attention to honor and morals, and respect toward elders (especially the ones least deserving of it) truely mean she is not fit for her lead status? I think not. A ...more
Duane
I have a feeling that Fanny Price is more like the real Jane Austen than, let's say, Elizabeth Bennett or Emma Woodhouse. I think Jane wanted to be like Elizabeth and Emma, but she knew she was really Fanny. The book had a different feel to it than the others, more serious characters, more real life issues. All in all, I liked it. I would rate it somewhere in the middle of the pack of her novels. But Fanny is one of my favorite Jane Austen heroines.
Trish
Mar 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This edition of Mansfield Park comes with a great introduction and notes, containing interesting information about the publication of this novel and historical context.

I have been a huge Jane Austen fan ever since I first saw P&P and shortly thereafter read the novel, leading to me falling in love with the dignified wit and sass this author has had. It can't have been easy in her time, which makes me appreciate her dry humour and social criticism even more.

A fair warning to you all: I cannot
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Melindam
Update 3/7/2017

What is not a surprise: every time I re-read a Jane Austen novel (no matter which one), I discover something new that surprises me.

Like opening an old treasure chest where you think you are familiar with every item and yet you realise there is always something new turning up.

So many thoughts on this particular re-read, I might end up writing a proper review eventually ... or not.

My present musing
-Mrs Norris does not have a Christian name! She is either referred to as Miss Ward o
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Jason Koivu
"I can not but think good horsemanship has a great deal to do with the mind." Jane Austen always did a great job of planting ridiculous declarations in the mouths of characters she wished to discredit. Character was her strong suit and there's some good'uns here in.

Within Mansfield Park there are characterizations so delicate and actions of importance utterly unassuming. Some seem meaningless in their modesty. Excellent work by a diligent author. Dangerous pitfalls for the casual reader.

The who
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Bradley
Fanny is quite a different bird than most that fly through the books I normally read, self-effacing, eager to please, and horribly self-conscious. I'm not used to that as a main character in an Austen book. Still, it works. She's shy and sensitive, and while we all like to poo-poo such characters in novels, they're generally quite wonderful people in real life.

So am I giving this novel a pass because I felt something for Fanny? Possibly. Otherwise, I probably would have been up in arms against t
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Diane
Sweet, endearing Fanny Price. Fanny is so good and is so perceptive about her own morals and feelings that reading this novel always makes me resolve to be a kinder and more gracious person.

There is strength in kindness. Fanny is not physically strong, but her character is. She protects her heart, and she earnestly tries to help wherever she can. Born into a poor family, when she's 10 she is adopted by her wealthy uncle, Sir Thomas Bertram, and goes to live on his family's estate at Mansfield P
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Margaret
Mansfield Park is perhaps not the one of Austen's novels which appeals the most to modern sensibilities; after all, reasonably faithful adaptations have been made recently of several of Austen's other novels, while Mansfield Park was changed into something Austen lovers barely recognized. Mansfield Park is the home of Fanny Price, the poor relation of Sir Thomas and Lady Bertram (Fanny's mother's sister), who took her to live with them from her impoverished Portsmouth home. Fanny is largely over ...more
Julie Christine
The filling of the reading sandwich between my first time with Mansfield Park ten years ago and last week is Susan Cain's Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, which I happened upon two years ago. Cain's book was a revelation to me. At last, I finally understood my essence—after years of wondering what's wrong with me, why I crave so much time alone, why gatherings of people exhaust me, why, yes indeed, I steer my grocery cart abruptly away if I see someone I know in ...more
Carol ♔Type, Oh Queen!♕
I've just reread Tadiana's review of this wonderful book & I very much agree with her central point - Austen's novels are not romances & you are doomed to disappointment if you expect them to be. Pride & Prejudice has the most romantic elements, but also enough bracing realism to act like a bucket of water thrown over the face! The books are more very interesting character studies.

Fanny comes to Mansfield Park as a shy & not very robust ten year old. Although the Bertram family
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Mitticus
A los 10 años Fanny Price llega a vivir a casa de sus pudientes tios en Mansfield Park. Sir Thomas Bertram es un baronet, que se casó con su tia y tienen cuatro hijos mayores que ella. Ella es la sobrina pobretona a quien han aceptado por caridad, y su tia Norris, la otra hermana de su madre, nunca permite que ella olvide su mala situación. Sometida, se refugia en los libros y en la amistad de su primo Edmund.

Fanny Price a primera vista parece la protagonistas más ñoña de Austen. Es más fácil en
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Drew
Jul 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
3 1/2 stars. Mansfield Park is very different from the well-known Pride and Prejudice, but it's still a very good read. In fact, it was around 4 1/2 stars up until the end, which I found unnecessarily dragged out and long.

If you don't know, I love Jane Austen. While I've only read one other book by her, I grew up watching all the movies and the stories found a permanent place in my heart. Maybe it's because I got to visit Jane Austen's house in England and see her very own writing desk that I fe
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Holly
Aug 23, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Austen fans, regency fans
I'm really not surprised that not a lot of people like Fanny Price. She's timid, moralistic and extremely passive. But really, what were people expecting her to do, exactly? Tell her cousin she loves him? B-slap Miss Crawford? Fanny is low in society, brought up to be grateful to everyone, and has no independence (dowry, etc,.). A lot of women were like that in those days. Many shy people also have a higher regard for authority than others, because of authority's 'better' judgement, and that is ...more
Maureen
This may even be more like a 2.5/5 idek.
I overall really disliked these characters and this story and also this book was LONG AS HECK.
Everyone was the worst except Fanny, who was only the worst about the first 25% of the book.
What I DID like is having a girl who is perceived as weak and quiet and shy STAND UP TO A GUY SHE DIDN'T LIKE. Like ESP in a novel of this time, having this girl be like nah you're all wrong, even when it changed people's good opinion over, was just so great. And her contin
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Eric
Aug 05, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: unexpected
My reading of Mansfield Park was attended, part of the way, by two poets talking about the difficulty of writing (or to me, reading) Austen’s kind of novel:


A young poet’s ignorance of life will go unnoticed. Meter, rhyme, felicitous phrases, and what not mask the underlying weakness or banality. With fiction, where dissimilar characters suffer and grow and interact, there is no place to hide. One either knows what people go through or doesn’t.
(James Merrill)


Then she’s a novelist. I don’t know w
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Deborah Markus
Mar 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mansfield Park is probably Austen's least liked novel. Northanger Abbey may be flawed, but it's a romp and a quick read; Persuasion may be dark, but it's tender and passionate, and contains quite possibly Austen's greatest proposal ever.

But what does Mansfield Park have to offer? A heroine who possesses every 18th-century feminine virtue? Hardly a recommendation to a 21st-century reader. A main character so physically delicate one can hardly imagine her surviving her wedding night, let alone ch
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Veronique
“They care for no one but themselves.”

(some spoilers...)

Reading through the pages of this novel, I kept being reminded of Cinderella and indeed, it seems Austen gives us her own take on a fairy tale, but one full of irony (of course) and incisiveness against her contemporaries. Every character is flawed and more than this, they all suffer from varying degrees of selfishness and self-centeredness. The only one impervious to this IS Fanny. She seems to fulfil the function of a mirror reflecting t
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Teresa
Jan 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Reread

Perhaps more than with any other novelist I've come across, Austen's novels seem to be judged by their heroines. While it's true that Fanny Price is not vivacious like the rest of Jane Austen's heroines and that I have a soft spot for those so put upon by others, I never felt she was the prig I see her criticized for being. Instead, I found the depiction an astute psychological portrait of a young woman, lacking confidence, constitutionally unable to act against her true self, both confuse
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Joudy
Mar 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Give a girl an education, and introduce her properly into the world and ten to one but she has the means of settling well,without farther expense to any body "

Fanny ; the least glamorous of the heroines, with all her faults of ignorance and timidity, was fixed at Mansfield Park and learning to transfer in its favor much of her attachment to her former home, grow up there, not unhappily among her cousins. There was no positive ill-nature in Maria and Julia, and though fanny was often mortified
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Rebecca
Jan 08, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Brit lit lovers
I don't think this book would have been so disappointing if I hadn't just seen the movie adaptation of it (specifically, the 1999 version). I saw the movie first, and liked the plot so much that I started the book. I enjoyed reading P & P and S & S, so I assumed I would enjoy Mansfield Park also. I quickly found out that the movie was much more entertaining -- but more importantly than that, its social/political message was more palatable to me than the book's.

In the movie, the protagoni
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Emer
Sep 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
"I think it ought not to be set down as certain that a man must be acceptable to every woman he may happen to like himself."


Mansfield Park features my favourite Austen heroine!
I know!!!!
Quite the unpopular opinion I have when it comes to Ms Austen's leading ladies.
Don't get me wrong, I love them ALL but I think Fanny Price shades it for me.

Fanny Price frequently gets a bad rep for being dull and boring or much too pious; for not having the same spark or fieriness as an Elizabeth Bennett or
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Kim
May 14, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook, re-read

This review contains some spoilers.

About a year ago I started a Jane Austen project, which has involved listening to the six major novels on audiobook, most of them narrated by Juliet Stevenson, who is simply wonderful at bringing Austen’s characters to life. It says something about me that in this period I have listened to Persuasion twice. It says something else about me that I left this book until last. That I did so won't come as a big surprise to admirers of Jane Austen's novels. This is th
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Charity
Jan 13, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who want to end their love affair with Jane Austen
Shelves: 1001books
Argh! I am very surprised that I was able to finish this book. I found it to be completely tedious. If this had been the first book I had read by Jane Austen, it would have been enough to turn me off from the rest of her works.

Fanny was too virtuous a character to be likable. She was dull as powder and entirely too submissive. I would have much more enjoyed reading about the spunky Miss Mary Crawford. She would have proved to be a more approachable heroine and her high jinx could never be boring
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Jane Austen was an English novelist whose works of romantic fiction, set among the landed gentry, earned her a place as one of the most widely read writers in English literature, her realism and biting social commentary cementing her historical importance among scholars and critics.

Austen lived her entire life as part of a close-knit family located on the lower fringes of the English landed gentry
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More about Jane Austen...
“Life seems but a quick succession of busy nothings.” 1040 likes
“Selfishness must always be forgiven you know, because there is no hope of a cure.” 298 likes
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