I am, in general, a fully paid up fan of the works of Jane Austen. I’ve read all the other novels two or three times each at least and my current Austen obsession is The Lizzie Bennet Diaries (which I really really recommend everyone to take a look at). But for some reason I had never got round to Northanger Abbey. So this seemed like the ideal time to put that right.
Reader, I was underwhelmed. I believe it was the first novel that Austen completed (though one of the last to be published) and actually, that showed. The plot was paper thin and the Gothic novel pastiche wore off on me very quickly. The heroine, Catherine Morland was bland, the hero Henry Tilney two dimensional and the supporting characters just didn’t interest me much at all.
But there were a couple of interesting sections and I particularly liked Austen’s defence of the modern taste for novel-reading. I can imagine her in 2013 putting up a similar argument for PC/video games or social networks.
Read again? I probably will. Hopefully it will grow on me.
Coming up; my first Lenten book A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Evans