Last summer, I bought a journal with Jane Austen quotes sprinkled throughout it. It put me in such a mood to re-read Austen's novels that I went and bought a box set of all her completed novels. In paperback, but they're trade paperbacks, not pocket ones, so good enough. And then I never managed to start reading them. But when I read P.D. James' Death Comes to Pemberley this year, I knew The Time Had Come to start my journey through Austenland.
here and here a few years ago. But I didn't particularly love the story.
What was wrong with me?
In case you're not up on your Austen, this is the one where Elizabeth Bennet spends most of the book disliking Mr. Darcy because she finds him proud and cold. Mr. Darcy spends most of the book trying to convince himself he shouldn't love Lizzy because her family is unsuitable.
What can I say about this book that hasn't already been said a hundred times, and said better than I ever can? Not much. I'm amazed by Austen's ability to make ordinary people so compelling. I so admire her grasp of how details and small events build up to bring about important changes in hearts, minds, and lives. And I'm intrigued by her ability to allow a book's events unfold slowly and yet keep me enthralled.
Also, I'm totally in love with Mr. Darcy now. Just FYI.