Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Persuasion Paperback – November 29, 2014
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
[Coralie Bickford-Smith's] recent work for Penguin Classics is...nothing short of glorious --Anna Cole
About the Author
One of England s most beloved authors, Jane Austen wrote such classic novels as Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Emma, and Northanger Abbey. Published anonymously during her life, Austen s work was renowned for its realism, humour, and commentary on English social rites and society at the time. Austen s writing was supported by her family, particularly by her brother, Henry, and sister, Cassandra, who is believed to have destroyed, at Austen s request, her personal correspondence after Austen s death in 1817. Austen s authorship was revealed by her nephew in A Memoir of Jane Austen, published in 1869, and the literary value of her work has since been recognized by scholars around the world.
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
Brief Synopsis: Anne Elliot is the only humble, good-hearted member of her very vain and rich family. If you've even seen the Kardashians and their wealthy people "problems" like only having two house-keepers instead of three, that's the Elliot clan. Anne has two sisters and a father whose main concern in life is being introduced to the right people, being conceived as wealthy, and being the center of attention wherever they go. Anne is very mild in nature, very quiet, and loves to be of service. She is often overlooked and rarely consulted on any family matter. Her interests and happiness are of no concern to any of her family. The Elliots also have a family friend, Mrs. Russell, who all in all is a good person, but also considers herself at the top of society and sees as her primary job to make sure the girls remain there with her. She however, loves Anne and cares about her. She proves this by persuading Anne to break her engagement, when Anne is 19, from Captain Wentworth, who clearly is unworthy of marrying an Elliot. Even though Anne and Frederick love each other, Anne is persuaded to end it. Frederick soon after goes off to sea to war, where he becomes very wealthy.
When he returns Anne is 27 and not yet married, but his heart is still broken so he persuades himself that he must do everything in his power to ignore her and proceed in finding himself a wife. He does this by attaching himself to two 20 year old cousins of Anne, who Anne is staying with at the time, and thus spends a lot of time in her company. Though he is committed to only saying hello to her and other small talk as not to seem rude.
Anne's heart goes a flutter when she hears that her ex is back in town. Like him, she tries to tell herself that it was a long time ago and neither he nor she have any feelings left for each other, be it contempt or love. She is wrong, at least in herself. She is very aware of every little move Captain
Wentworth makes and jumps at the sound of his name being said out loud. So cute.
Many months pass by and some other things happen to both their lives, but they continue to run into each other. Anne gets a proposal from another man, who she wishes to have nothing to do with. However, rumors spread quickly that she is to be engaged soon and Captain Wentworth is about to leave her alone, but not before seeing her one last time. Mind you, that in all of this they must have said only a handful of sentences to each other. All their feelings and thoughts are conveyed only through looks and manners towards each other. Finally he writes her a very romantic letter, professing his love for her throughout the years and not being able to stop dreaming of her, even after she rejected him all that time ago. That if she still feels like she did when they were engaged she only need to look at him and he will know her answer.
Now I should say that old-English literature is very anti-climatic at the ends. In my mind I always see the two lovers running towards each other, embracing with passion and love and sharing at least a little kiss. Most of old-English books lack this, but that is to no fault of their own. Things like that were just simply not written about. Affection was only shown at home, not even hand holding was frowned upon outdoors. So after I close each book I re-write the ending in my head to include the run and kiss so to speak.
I love this story because Anne is not a strong character like other Jane Austen heroines. She is very invisible to everyone else, except Frederick Wentworth. As much as he tried not to see her, she occupied his every thought and dream. And that's why I love her. She is pure and uncorrupted and does so much for everyone else and no body cares for her. She is not a main character, yet she is the main character in her life and she doesn't need for people to see her or know her, she just needs the love of one man. Maybe it reminds me a little bit of myself and my husband, I don't know, but this is my favorite story.
"Her pleasure in the walk must arise from the exercise and the day, from the view of the last smiles of the year upon the tawny leaves and withered hedges, and from repeating to herself some few of the thousand poetical descriptions extant of autumn--that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence on the mind of taste and tenderness--that season which has drawn from every poet worthy of being read some attempt at description, or some lines of feeling."
Autumn is the time for intro- and retrospection & these characteristics are exploited to the full in Anne Elliot.
So who is she? An introvert spinster of 27 who - in that day and age - is considered almost too old to have any chances in the marriage market and destined to be sidelined by society (spinsterhood meant lower social standing, even if you are a daughter of a baronet) and in Anne's case: by her family as well.
At the age of nineteen she met the "love of her life", but due to the persuasion of her friend, Lady Russel ("you are too young, he has no social position, no fortune to support a wife, PLUS he is a naval officer, whoes life is always in danger" - this is during the Napoleonic wars with France) & the cold disregard of her family, she gave up the engagement. The rejected lover, Frederic Wentworth, thinking her weak-minded and entirely too persuadable, left her for good & Anne, with only a memory of their love, realises -too late- that she made the wrong decision.
"She had been forced into prudence in her youth, she learned romance as she grew older: the natural sequel of an unnatural beginning"
This summary may sound quite melodramatic and very unlike any of Jane Austen's former novels, but her genius is at work, and the book is anything but.
Anne is the most isolated of all Austen's heroines. She is to all intents and purposes a "nobody" to her family & to society, with the exception of Lady Russel. Nobody sees her, nobody hears her, her whole existence does not count (curiously, we do not even meet her until the end of chapter 3) and yet it takes Austen's genius to put her in the centre at the same time. We see through her eyes and mind what is happening. She is not noticed, but she notices everything.
In addition, she is also forced into a passivity that not even Fanny Price can surpass. In the first part of the novel, JA barely allows her to speak. Her replies/thoughts are always reported (that famous invention of free indirect speech), but we cannot hear her.
After 8 years of separation Captain Wentworth (a now successful, rich & high-ranking officer) reappears on the scene - vowing, of course, to have nothing to do with Anne Elliot - and this seems to liberate Anne's repressed energy (which is natural in a way as he was the only one who understood her completely). From that point on, slowly, but gradually Anne's presence becomes stronger: she talks more, she acts more, and she is capable to show the qualities of resoluteness and independence which he thought she totally lacked.
This is an amazingly powerful novel and though the notion of "Romantic Love" seems to be much more pronounced, Jane Austen is Jane Austen still -thank Heaven! For the romance is the result of realism (money makes the world go round): when Capt. Wentworth first proposed, he had nothing to offer socially or financially. When he proposes again he has high social standing / fortune through his own merits; and for Jane Austen -always acutely aware of social expectations & pecuniary realities of life - this is necessary for a happy ending.