|(From my Instagram)|
I love Catherine Morland. I love Henry Tilney. I love Elanor Tilney. They're all absolutely adorable, and I want to hug all three of them. At once, if possible. An Austen group hug.
I also love how much this book makes me laugh. It's just delightful, that's all there is to it! I first read it in 2012 -- it was the last of her major works that I read. I loved it then, and I loved it now. How could I not? An entire novel about a heroine who can't possibly be the heroine of a novel? It's brilliant.
As usual, Austen's writing is delightfully wry and witty and sarcastic. Especially the dialog for Henry Tilney, whom I would probably have been scared of if I'd met him when I was 17 myself. Dude is way too smart and way too teasing, and his humor is probably too dry for me to have quite gotten when I was that age. Now, however, I do declare he is probably my favorite Austen hero! Though if I reread Persuasion soonish, I may recant that and decide that nope, it's Captain Wentworth. I really can't decide between the two of them most of the time, so whichever one I've encountered most recently is my favorite.
I actually based a few things in Cloaked, my Little Red Riding Hood retelling, on this book. Like Catherine, Mary Rose is imaginative and fond of reading novels. Like Catherine, she travels far from home at a young age and must learn to trust her instincts and intelligence. Like Catherine, she meets and dances with a young man who also likes to read novels and tease her. I didn't actually plan for those similarities to be there, they just kind of organically happened while I was writing it, and I liked it so well, I tossed some Austen references into the book while I was at it to cement things :-)
Anyway! So happy I got to re-read this. It was perfectly charming, and I'm now in the mood for more Austen, so we'll see if I can slip another of her books into my reading time this spring.
Particularly Good Bits:
Alas! if the heroine of one novel be not patronized by the heroine of another, from whom can she expect protection and regard? (p. 29).
Woman is fine for her own satisfaction alone. No man will admire her the more, no woman will like her better for it (p. 67).
"If I could not be persuaded into doing what I thought wrong, I never will be tricked into it" (p. 95).
"The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid" (p. 102).
If This was a Movie, I Would Rate It: PG for not-spelled-out-entirely cursing and some taking the Lord's name in vain, both by one odious character. ::glares in his direction::
This is my 16th book read and reviewed for my second go-round with the Classics Club.