I recently read “Northanger Abbey” by Jane Austen.
I thought it was going to be like the other Austen novels I’ve read and take me ages to read it, but I was wrong – I went through it in a just a few hours, mostly during one day!
I was surprised that it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be! It’s still not my thing though.
Catherine is a bit more likeable than some Austen heroines, despite her being a bit naive and having a funny way of viewing the world. She likes reading gothic books, which is better than reading trashy romance novels, although they seem to give her strange ideas about the world, so she is convinced Mr Tilney’s father killed his wife! Obviously this would never happen in an Austen, but it still brings something different to the novel!
She’s also a bit stupid when it comes to her so-called friend Isabella, who acts all lovely and then breaks off her engagement to Catherine’s brother and disappears. Catherine learns the hard way that you can’t trust everyone who wants to be your friend.
I liked Mr Tilney from the start: he seems to be a perfectly nice chap. He is friendly and clever, and a good match for Catherine.
This novel may not have the clout of some of Austen’s other, more popular works, but it’s much easier to follow and isn’t as full of endless conversations between characters about which couples are going to get married and all that stuff. It’s a definitely a bit lighter and I suppose slightly more amusing as it is supposed to be a parody.
I’m giving it 6/10 because it is interesting and it’s maybe a little more modern than Austen’s other novels: it has a gold-digger, fake friends, unwanted male attention, an over-active imagination and so on. It also kept me reading for a lot longer than the other novels! It’s still not something I would necessarily read again though!