Raise your hand if you prefer Pride and Prejudice.
All right, now raise your hand for Emma.
How about Sense and Sensibility?
Mansfield Park? Okay.
Northhanger Abbey? Just asking.
And the rest of you? It’s got to be for Persuasion–right?
Well, Jane only wrote six novels; it’s got to be for one of them.
Hmm, I shall gently try to persuade you to cast your Austen vote for Persuasion.
- Pride and Prejudice gets much too much attention. Jane has six literary children and P&P will become unbearably too spoiled with so much fuss. Look at all the celebratory brouhaha over the publishing of the novel! Goodness…
- Anne and Frederick don’t have to go through that messy “love me, love me not” business found in JA’s other plots; they already love each other. Getting to the point where they re-realize it makes it so much more satisfying than the on/off dilemma.
- Persuasion has THE best love letter. Here is a partial:
“I must go, uncertain of my fate; but I shall return hither, or follow your party, as soon as possible. A word, a look, will be enough to decide whether I enter your father’s house this evening or never.”
Who could not met upon receiving this as an encouragement?
- Anne and Frederick are older and have been knocked around a bit in life and more truly represent the reality that love’s course is not perfect. In other words: their love is more relatable than the fairy-talish idea of sitting around and waiting for Mr or Ms Right to pop along when least expected (okay–Emma had a bit of that going on).
- the 1995 version with Ciaran Hinds and Amanda Root captures well the complicated tango of emotions these two separated lovers endure as they find their way back into each other’s hearts and arms. Amanda Root’s transformation from wilted and worn down spinister-in-the-making to resolute refreshed woman is transfixing.
So, five amazing reasons why Persuasion should become THE Jane Austen first mentioned in her stable of renowned novels.
Have I persuaded you?
- Egads, Those Cads of Literature (cricketmuse.wordpress.com)
- Pardon, Me, Emily, Jane’s Calling (veranano.wordpress.com)
- Stamps show Jane Austen book scenes (bbc.co.uk)
i’ve been slowly making my way through austen’s novel since my husband gave me her complete works a few years ago as a gift. i’ve made it halfway and have been saving persuasion for last as i do think it may be the best one.
Oh it is indeed! What a thoughtful present.
After reading another most interesting post I wouldn’t dare to argue with you on this one. But Reason 3, the BEST love letter, I would like to give equal credit to P.D.James when she wrote The Murder Room. At the end dear Adam is so unsure of Emma’s feelings that he writes a letter and puts it in her hand at the train station, writing that if she is going to reject him he would rather read it in a letter than see it in her eyes. It is a most humble, honest and loving letter in the modern era. And given that P.D.James is a great fan of Jane Austen I think the two letters belong together. Quotes –
I have no reason to hope. You know that I love you but that love gives me no claim on you.
I can’t promise to make you happy. It would be arrogant to assume that such a gift lay in my power.
My only hope is that you may care enough to risk this adventure together.
Pretty mature stuff. You really need to read the whole letter. The BBC have an excellent production of it on DVD with Martin Shaw as Adam Dalgliesh
I’ll have to find it. I’ve not gotten around to much P.D.James–I’ll have to start with this one.
He meets Emma in the previous book, Death in Holy Orders, but they are crime novels so his private life is onlya small part of the story
Forgot to say that I’ve decided to watch Persuasion again tonight !
Yay! Which version? I’m prone towards Ciarin Hinds, although Rupert is sure easy on the eye!
Yes. I like Ciarin Hinds best but my copy is the 1971 version with Ann Fairbank and Bryan Marshall ! Quaint but lovable just the same.
I’ve seen several versions of Persuasion, but this one is to my mind the best one. All of the actors really did a great job with it. I read on the Internet Movie Database that they filmed the movie with all natural light; probably to give it a more real-life appearance.
To my mind, this is far and away the best version of Persuasion that I’ve seen. All of the actors did a fantastic job with it. I’ve also read that they filmed the movie using all natural light, probably to give it a more realistic appearance.
Time to go stock up on popcorn and watch it again!
It is a favorite of mine. The Rupert version was far too rushed, although I thought him closer in age to Wentworth, but Ciarin did a tremendous job of being stoic and in love.
Well I commented on another post of yours regarding this book that other day. I still don’t love it (maybe I’ll watch the movie!). But I have to agree with you on the love letter. I read it while travelling home on the train and nearly started crying it was so beautiful. He also didn’t use the word “ardently” (unlike a certain Mr Darcy). I like that.
Persuasion has grown on me–I think the Ciarin Hinds version is what did it. He is the perfect Cpt. Wentworth.
The professor can’t stand Jane Austen (just like Mark Twain couldn’t). You do know that all her books are the same, don’t you? 😉
Jane Austen reminds me of chocolate chip cookies. If I make the several batches using the same recipe but add into different ingredients I still have a chocolate chip cookie, but each batch is different. And for those of us who enjoy chocolate chip cookies, this is a good thing.
Thanks for stopping by. I hope you’ll visit again 🙂
What a neat way to describe it! Do you mind if I steal that if the professor is ever in need?
Plagarism with due credt works 😉