15 March, 2018

REVIEW: EMMA by Jane Austen

Title: Emma
Author:  Jane Austen
Series: -
Genres: Classics, Romance
Publisher: Penguin Books
Release: 1815
Source: Paperback/Audiobook
Pages: 474

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'I never have been in love; it is not my way, or my nature; and I do not think I ever shall.'

Beautiful, clever, rich - and single - Emma Woodhouse is perfectly content with her life and sees no need for either love or marriage. Nothing, however, delights her more than interfering in the romantic lives of others. But when she ignores the warnings of her good friend Mr. Knightley and attempts to arrange a suitable match for her protegee Harriet Smith, her carefully laid plans soon unravel and have consequences that she never expected. With its imperfect but charming heroine and its witty and subtle exploration of relationships, Emma is often seen as Jane Austen's most flawless work.

This edition includes a new chronology and additional suggestions for further reading. 

EXPECTATIONS: I love Jane Austen's writing and one of my goals of 2018 is to read/reread all of Jane's books. Emma is actually one of these few I have never read so I went into it without any real expectations. 

THE WORLD: As Jane usually wrote about her own time and critiqued the ideas and accepted ways of her own society I assume this book is set in early 19th century. There were really only two ways for a woman in that time, to marry and consider yourself lucky or to stay a spinster and sorta a third wheel to your family. It is actually interesting that Jane decided to write about a woman who thought of herself as better of a spinster as Jane Austen herself was a spinster and lived from the 'goodness' of her brother. 

CHARACTERS: The main character is called Emma Woodhouse. She is this a little bit of know it all arrogant girl who considers herself a match maker and not suited for marriage. Now initially I would say Go Girl but unfortunately Emma's interactions with others and dialogues especially with her father ruins that image really fast. For me Emma was this naive and rather proud girl who was just too simple minded to see far. It is especially clear later in the book where she starts giving her advice and almost ruins the marriage prospects of her dear friend. Also a funny fact, even tho Emma told us many times throughout the book that she is just not born for marriage she does eventually get married and act like a little goose she is. I just cannot see past her simple mind tbh, I know this book is considered as Jane's best work but I cannot but dislike it. Where in other books of Jane there is always at least one character you like or somebody gets redeemed in this one...I felt annoyed by all of the characters and was very happy when the book finally ended. Also, if you think that parents in Pride and Prejudice are dumb wait till you meet Emma's father... 

ROMANCE: As I already mentioned Emma fancies herself a matchmaker. However, if you really look at this book she is just a naive girl that despite saying she is not made for marriage gets of course married off eventually. 

GOOD: I am not sure if I can really pick any good part in this book. 

BAD: It was dull book. I am a huge fan of Jane but really...it was painful to read and I would not recommend it to anybody except for a hard core classics fans. It is almost my least favorite book of Jane unfortunately. 

OVERALL: My only advice is - read this book after you read the rest of Jane Austen books. Well except Lady Susan because that one is just a nightmare. 

What do you think about EMMA?



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