- Series: Penguin Classics
- Paperback: 368 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Classics; Revised ed. edition (April 29, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0141439661
- ISBN-13: 978-0141439662
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 1 x 7.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 5,459 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,340 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Sense and Sensibility (Penguin Classics) Revised ed. Edition
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About the Author
Jane Austen (1775-1817) was extremely modest about her own genius but has become one of English literature's most famous women writers. She is also the author of Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Persuasion and Northanger Abbey.
Ros Ballaster is Professor of 18th Century Studies at Mansfield College, Oxford.
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One of a growing brood of children in a lower middle class family in Portsmouth, Fanny is placed for raising with her much wealthier Aunt and Uncle Bertram at Mansfield Park in the English countryside. The ten year-old Fanny is painfully shy, physically sickly, and less educated than her Bertram cousins, who mostly ignore or make fun of her. Her Aunt Norris, responsible for the day-to-day raising of her cousins, thrives on tormenting Fanny. Only her cousin Edmund takes an interest in her.
Fanny's Uncle, Sir Thomas Bertram, leaves to tend to his estates in Antigua, just as the wealthy and charming siblings Mary and Henry Crawford arrive from London. Mary and Henry will tempt the Mansfield youth into inappropriate behavior, which only Fanny resists. Sir Thomas will restore order when he returns, but at what cost to the household? Fanny herself will be pressured into marriage, facing exile from Mansfield if she refuses. What choices can Fanny make, and how will she find her way to the one man she cares about?
In Mansfield Park, the reader will find an Austen heroine whose attraction is based on her perseverence in the face of very attractive temptations and seemingly reasonable pressures. It is Austen's genius to insert complex characters into the subtle relationships between four families in the story. The story provides a fascinating venue for social commentary and compelling domestic drama. The witty and enthusiastic but morally flawed Crawfords, for example, seem more attractive than the shy, vulnerable, and withdrawn Fanny or the understated Edmund. "Mansfield Park" is recommended to Jane Austen's fans.
As the story opens, Sir Walter Elliot, a vain and foppish baronet facing bankruptcy, is persuaded to rent his home and move his family to Bath to economize on expenses. The unmarried middle daughter, Anne, is assigned responsibility for closing up the house and turning it over to the prospsective renters. Anne is shocked to learn that the renters are an Admiral Croft and his wife, whose brother is her former fiancee Frederick Wentworth, once a young naval officer, now a wealthy captain. Their first encounter will be awkward and painful for Anne, who regrets not having married Wentworth. Wentworth himself is still in search of a wife. Thus begins a delicate dance. Can Wentworth pass up younger and more attractive women to take a second look at Anne? Is Anne herself clear in what she wants? Will the two former lovers find a way to a second chance to make the right choice?
In this final novel, Anne wrestles with a dilemma common to Austen heroines, whether to marry for love or money and security. There is much humor and more than a little suspense in Austen's story, and an exploration of the dilemma. "Persuasion" is a well-written and moving story, filled with the usual well-developed characters and often biting social commentary of a Jane Austen novel. It is very highly recommended to her fans and to those readers looking for an excellent period romance.
Most recent customer reviews
A delightful romp on the wild side. Emma is like a modern-day political poll.
Ask a question and you'll get a wrong answer.Born from the Ashes
That is, at least, until the man she loves the most, turns out to be the one she never suspected.Read more