Monday, February 4, 2013

Pride and Prejudice - Pick of the Month Review

book cover art Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice
by Jane Austen
Genres: Classic, Romance,
   Historical Romance

     Before I found Goodreads and their book groups, my daughter and some of our friends had formed a book group on facebook. When picking what we would read next, I was outvoted on this book. I mean, yeah, I'd heard it was good and did want to read it, but Pride and Prejudice was not high on my list of priorities. I was enthralled. Meg Ryan's character had it right in You've Got Mail. While discussing this book she claims that she gets swept away in the language. Our reading group had a very slow pace of only 5 chapters per week, as we all work and have other things going on. I could not put it down after only 5 chapters, there was no way. I snuck ahead to the 6th chapter on that first day of reading. And then just one more chapter. Maybe one more. Several hours later I had finished the book and was starting it over, fully prepared, and wanting to read it a second time - five chapters at a time, with my book group.

     Mr. Darcy is a typical English chap of fortune - well bred, well mannered, and tight-lipped. He is assumed to be a pompous boor when actually, he is a bit shy around strangers and not very good at small talk. Some of this is due to his pride. He feels he would have nothing in common with those in a lower social station than himself.

     Elizabeth Bennet is not the typical English girl of the times, nor is her family. Elizabeth is highly intelligent and willful, she loves to banter with anyone who can her match her wit. Her mother is loud and doesn't know the meaning of the word subtle. Her younger sisters are crazy about boys, particularly soldiers, and they lack the subtlety that their mother could never teach them. Her father ignores them all as his sole means of escaping this combination of personalities with his sanity in tact. Elizabeth becomes quite fond of a young soldier stationed within the area who tells her a woeful tale of his mistreatment at the hands of Mr. Darcy. This information prejudices Elizabeth to judge Darcy before really getting to know him for herself.

     The conflict between Darcy's pride and Elizabeth's prejudice sets the stage for a book that has survived two centuries. Readers have enjoyed this story so much that they crave more. There are tons of fan fiction sequels where authors have taken it upon themselves to write the sequel that they would have loved Jane Austen to have written. Fans yearn to read more, knowing it isn't from the same pen as the original story but hoping to be sated with whatever they can get their hands on.

     This novel is definitely a "you hafta read" book if ever there was one. As with most classics, this document is within the public domain and can be downloaded as a free ebook from both Amazon and Goodreads.

I give it PYOL review graphic my personal PYOL rating!

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