Saturday, May 25, 2013

Sense and Sensibility Review

Author: Jane Austen
Title: Sense and Sensibility
Good Reads-
'The more I know of the world, the more am I convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!'

Marianne Dashwood wears her heart on her sleeve, and when she falls in love with the dashing but unsuitable John Willoughby she ignores her sister Elinor's warning that her impulsive behaviour leaves her open to gossip and innuendo. Meanwhile Elinor, always sensitive to social convention, is struggling to conceal her own romantic disappointment, even from those closest to her. Through their parallel experience of love—and its threatened loss—the sisters learn that sense must mix with sensibility if they are to find personal happiness in a society where status and money govern the rules of love.


Today’s review is a special one of sorts. As my final English assignment, I’m going to be reviewing Sense and Sensibility as if it were any YA novel I managed to get my hands on.  So for those of you who have any interest in Jane Austen, you can thank my lovely English teacher for giving me this opportunity to share my opinions with you all! I’ll first start by saying that I was highly disappointed with this book. I mean it's Jane Austen, she’s one of the most known and influential authors ever, I've never heard an ill word spoken of her, and well I had high expectations. Sadly, one of the worst things about this book to me was the writing style. Austen did not include a lot of dialogue; I personally think sometimes dialogue is what keeps the book moving. Austen however, took each opportunity of a lengthy conversation that would in my opinion interest the readers, and demolished it. Instead of a heated debate or a lovely heart to heart, Austen relayed the conversation in a monotone unemotional bland paragraph that literally had me counting the words. Taking my dislike for the writing aside, here’s what happened in Sense and Sensibility.

Elinor and Marianne are two sisters; along with their mother and youngest sister Margret, they relocate after their father’s death to a cottage in Devonshire, England. Upon moving they meet a series of interesting characters. From the candid Mrs. Jennings, to the reserved Lady Middleton, their lives most definitely begin to start its journey through twist and turns like no other. Even though Sense and Sensibility is a classic, and was first published two hundred and two years ago, it still centers around the one thing girls know best: boy drama. Although, for Elinor and Marianne who was asking who to prom wasn't their biggest worries. No, these two sisters had much bigger things to expect, and a shiny new diamond ring was amongst those things. Life takes on new complications as a series of suitors enter the girls’ world; whether it’s the outgoing town favorite John Willoughby, or the scholarly Edward Ferras. Elinor and Marianne experience the full emotional roller coaster as they learn the truth to love, friendship, and family.

The plot is as amazing as it sounds, each and every page leads you deeper into Elinor and Marianne’s lives, their hopes, their dreams, their fears, and their reality. I’m not sure I’d feel the same way if I lived during this time period, but to me Sense and Sensibility seemed very realistic. Not everyone is whom they appear to be, some made mistakes and deserve a second chances, while others think only of themselves. People are manipulative, others are overly charismatic; everyone deals with emotion different ways. While others stay quiet and put all their effort and time into projects or people, some keep to themselves. I think that Austen showed every possible personality throughout each of her characters. From flirtatious to blunt, each character carried a story of their own.

As I previously mentioned, Sense and Sensibility wasn't at all what I had imagined it to be. I wouldn't say it was dreadful, but it wasn't captivating either. I didn't really connect with any of the characters, to be honest, I actually didn't like many of them. The pace of the story is level and flows smoothly, and overall the story comes to a meaningful close. After you've walked a few miles in Elinor and Marianne’s shoes, it’s easy to hope for a happy ending. Which in a way they do earn, yet nothing in life is perfect, and Austen shows that in her writing, especially to me, in the end.

Overall I give this book a 3.5, and I can’t say I hated it, but I didn't enjoy. However, I think everyone should be given the chance to explore the world and lives that Austen so eloquently threads together with each and every word.

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