Katherine Cowley's Reviews > Northanger Abbey

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
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's review
Mar 01, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: classics, fiction, adult
Read in February, 2012

There are two types of people who read Jane Austen: Jane Austen fans and Pride and Prejudice fans. I truly am the latter--I love Pride and Prejudice and I reread it every year or two, and while I have read a few of her other books I'm truly a single book devotee.

That said, I'm really glad I read Northanger Abbey. I actually listened to it as a book on CD. It had an impressive mix of blatant satire, heavy humor, gothic mystery, and, as is a staple for Jane Austen, romance. On a visit to Bath, Catherine falls head over heels with Henry Tilney, and then goes to visit him and his sister at the mysterious Northanger Abbey. This is a story directly about what happens when you like novels a little too much (as our main character does) and how that can shade your interpretation of reality. The beginning of the novel is some of the funniest writing I've read, and the last 1/3, as soon as you hit Northanger Abbey, has a nice mixture of suspense, romance, and self-discovery. It may just have been listening to the audio version, but the center section started to slow a bit, and I found myself wishing that we would get out of Bath and move into the gothic parts of the novel. At the end though, with how everything tied together, I understood why Austen wrote it the way she did--the middle of the novel really is necessary to set up the denouement.

Great read, and one I'd come back to.
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09/22 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Michael I had not thought of two types of Austen fans...one who likes all her works, and one who just loves Pride and Prejudice. I think you are probably correct. I have read most of her works, but not all...yet. The main attraction for me is the beauty of her words....Michael

Katherine Cowley I am working on getting my way through her other books! I love how in the novels the narrator (and as you said, the beauty of the words) just makes the stories, and that's something you really don't get in the film adaptations.

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