I read Pride and Prejudice for the first time because of the 2005 movie. It was one of the classics I’d missed during high school, and I’d never bothered to pick it up because I figured it would be similar to Wuthering Heights (which, by all accounts, sounded like something that would drive me crazy to try and read) or Rebecca (which was good, but depressing).
However, I watched the movie because it had been nominated for an Oscar and I was trying to watch all the Oscar-nominated movies before the awards were given out. And I was stunned by how much I loved it. The next time I was at the used bookstore, I found a copy of Pride and Prejudice, and I immediately picked it up.
And I’m glad I did, because it made Jane Austen one of my favorite writers.
A Classic I Love:
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
The Regency writing style was difficult to read—whereas normally I can read a romance in one sitting, I could only read 25-30 pages before I needed to take a break—but I still loved the story.
Austen has a beautiful way of turning a phrase, of writing things that are still funny even now, some 200 years later. All her characters just leaped off the page, and I saw why Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy have been one of the most enduring romantic couples of recent memory. I loved Lizzie and her sisters, Bingley and Jane were absolutely wonderful, and I adored every moment Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy were together.
The initial awful proposal made me laugh-groan (and Elizabeth’s sound rejection had me cheering), and I loved that Darcy quietly went about fixing it—not because he really thought Elizabeth would actually reciprocate, but because it was the right thing to do. The way that they both had a flaw they needed to work through (Darcy’s pride, Elizabeth’s prejudice) in order to be together made it a very well-rounded and satisfying story.
I loved Pride and Prejudice so much that the next time I was in the used bookstore, I snapped up Northanger Abbey and Sense and Sensibility. Northanger Abbey was hilarious, and I’m really looking forward to reading Sense and Sensibility next.
If you haven’t read Jane Austen at all, I highly encourage you to pick up either Northanger Abbey or Pride and Prejudice. They’re wonderful books and well worth having in your collection.
A Classic I Want to Read:
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
I read the first few pages several years ago and was surprised at how much I like it, and so I’ve wanted to read the rest of it. My brother lent me his copy of the book, but I’ve been very slow about getting around to it just because my TBR list is so huge.
But yes, this one is pretty high on my list to read as soon as I can.