For March, The Classics Club asks:
Do you love Jane Austen or want to “dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone”? (Phrase borrowed from Mark Twain)
1. Why? (for either answer)?
Aw, Mark Twain! That’s harsh! Even when I wasn’t crazy about Jane Austen’s writing, I never wanted to dig her up and beat her with her own shin-bone (although I might like to beat the people who write all those spin-offs…with their own shallow, derivative books! I’m sorry – they are not all shallow and derivative. Just most of them. Ahem!)!
I appreciate Jane Austen. I do not love her with the fierceness that I feel for Charlotte Bronte, or treasure her in the way that I do Dickens. I admire what she does with language and her sly wit. That being said, I haven’t read her widely, and have read only one one of her books recently. Northanger Abbey is on the schedule for later this year, and I look forward to seeing how it colors my opinion. I want to read them all, though, eventually.
2. Favorite and/or least favorite Austen novel?
See above. I’ve read some others in college, but they were before Virginia Woolf helped me think differently about Austen. I look forward to discovering them again with my Woolf Glasses on 🙂
P.S. – If you have an opinion on why Jane inspires so many spin-off books, I’d love to hear it! I won’t point fingers, but Melody at Fingers and Prose did a post about a few recently, and compiled a list of nearly 200 titles! My mind . . . it boggles.
(funny cartoon from isthatcoffee. hee!)