My third Austen book (but only my second ‘official count’ for the 100 book challenge) was Persuasion. I didn’t have high hopes, considering I found Pride and Prejudice such a struggle and I was getting very little sleep thanks to my two, albeit adorable, ratbags.
I’d bought Emma, Sense and Sensibility and Persuasion from MacLeans and knew I needed to tackle one of them. So of course I chose the latter, being the one with the fewer pages.
And it surprised me! It was easy to read, with an engaging story and relatable characters. That’s right… Austen finally gave me a girl I could feel empathy for. You see, Anne Elliott isn’t one of those ‘woe-is-me, I need a man to solve all my problems’ kind of girl. She’s comfortable in her own skin and knows how to say no to a ‘fortune’. She impressed me, and rather than rolling my eyes throughout the story, I got swept away and savoured every word.
Jane Austen died in 1817 when she was just 41. She never got to see the publishing of Persuasion herself, which was published in 1818.
I think it’ll be Emma next! Maybe that’ll surprise me in a good way too.
By the way – how cute are the Vintage Classics Austen Series? I loved the patterns so much I bought all the Austens from the 100 book list I’m yet to read.
In July 2014 I set myself the challenge to finish 100 must-read books before I die. For my ongoing tally click here.Follow @jessieansons