It’s the first Monday of the month and we’re back with Author Addiction! This is a monthly feature here on Of Dragons and Hearts and on A Fool’s Ingenuity, Becky’s wonderful blog. You can also check out my previous editions with Robin Hobb, Tessa Dare, Sarah MacLean, Laini Taylor, Victoria (V. E.) Schwab, Sarah J. Maas, and Jennifer L. Armentrout. I think Danya of Fine Print will be joining us this time so make sure you check out both blogs!
This month, we decided to pick a common favourite, JANE AUSTEN! I can’t believe we didn’t think of her before but here we are now.
FIY, this post is *spoiler-free* in case you haven’t read her books yet (you really should, though!)
Jane and I go a way back. The first time I read Pride and Prejudice – or rather Prevzetnost in Pristranost – was in high school, when I picked up a really ugly old copy (from 1969, I think) that we had at home as a part of a collection of great translated classics. I don’t even know why I decided to read it, maybe I’d already watched the BBC adaptation with my mom? In any case, this was the beginning of my long and faithful relationship with Jane Austen’s wonderful work.
When asked those horrible, horrible questions, “What is your favourite book?”, or “If you could pick just one book to take with you to a desert island, which would you choose?” my answer is invariably Pride and Prejudice. I know, so cliché! But what can I do, I fell in love – not just with Mr. Darcy but with the entire cast and plot and writing.
In any case, I soon bought myself a lovely copy of the original text and proceded to re-read it about 7 times, whereupon I switched to listening to the audiobook whenever I feel like visiting Lizzy and crew because I can no longer justify reading the actual text when I practically know it by heart. Something about this story just speaks to me. I think P & P is a also wonderful starting point for anyone unfamilliar with her work.
I went on to acquire and read Jane’s entire work (I think?) in English, though I bought the books at different times, which resulted in my sadly mismatched collection. I sometimes send covetous glances towards those gorgeous Penguin hardbacks and even think about acquiring one of those enormous “collected novels” books that I couldn’t even carry around with me/hold up with one hand but I always decide to buy different books instead. *sigh*
My second-favourite of Jane’s books is Persuasion, which is slower and more… meditative than the lively P & P but I liked Anne despite her indecision and propensity for being pushed around by her family. The fact that Rupert Penry-Jones played Captain Wentworth had nothing to do with it, naturally.
Jane Austen is also the only author (so far) that has inspired me to enter a very heated
debate argument with a colleague at the University. He said all romances, including Jane’s were sappy and bad and without literary value – without having read her novels. My response was, I think, appropriately explosive and we finally agreed to disagree on the subject. I still get a bit riled up when I think about it.
I did manage to convice my husband to read P & P – my selling point was “I’ll never nag you about reading her novels again if you read this one and then tell me you hate it.” He really liked it, in fact, and went on to read Sense and Sensibility, too. :)
As for the movie versions of her novels – I will never forget Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy but the 2005 version with Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfayden owns my heart. That final scene with Darcy’s confession is pure gold, as is the wet one of his first heated speech. <3
I haven’t watched the other movies for ages which is something I intend to rectify immediately after my crazy schedule clears up a bit. I might even re-read some of the novels first, I just gave myself a major re-read lust by writing this post (funny how the mind works…).
Have you read any of Jane’s novels? Which one is your favourite?
Do you buy multiple copies of your favourite books?
I’d love to hear from you! :)