I had prejudices about Austens novels myself, funny enough. I thought they would be cheesy, dull etc. etc. In fact, they are everything but that. After Northanger Abbey (which was big fun) and Mansfield Park (which was lala), I decided to read her most famous. A bit sceptic, still, but already at the first chapter I recognized it’s such a joy to read. I love Austens cynicism. I laughed out loud more than once. I love her characters: I could totally imagine the lovely but little naïve Jane, silly Lydia, ‘this-world-isn’t-getting-better-for-me-anyway-so-f*ck-it’ Mr. Bennet, crazy, exaggerated Mr. Collins, empty-headed Mrs. Bennet, prim-and-gruffy-but-actually-so-good-hearted Mr. Darcy… And so on.
Some people say nothing happens in this book. Well, that is true as long as you expect super exciting things like world travels, alchemical inventions, ghostly appearances or whatever. But this is a 19th century romance written by a middle-class young woman, so the book is about 1-1,5 years from the life of an English middle-class family with five daughters and no heir, so it is important that they marry someone rich (at least that’s the thought of their mother, and, also, the thought of lots of people living in that time). That may sound dull, but Jane Austen is such a talented author, her characters are so funny, and he timing is perfect. I am happy to see that many men (!) give this book 4 or 5 stars. If you are one of the few people alive who haven’t read this book, do yourself a favor and try. I promise it will be fun.