Title: Sense & Sensibility
Author: Jane Austin
Genre: Classic, Victorian
The Short of It
Sensible or not, Love is tricky.
The Long of It
The Dashwood women are in a precarious position. After the death of their father, Elinor, Marianne, and Margaret are essentially forced to move from their comfortable and majestic estate to the farmland in a different area completely. And although there are multiple characters in S&S, the story primarily follows the two older siblings, Elinor & Marianne. Polar opposites, they must come to terms with their role in society and love.
The Thoughts about It
Jane Austen books have a way of welcoming the soul. And I have to admit, I’m slightly restless knowing that I only have three more novels of hers to experience “for the first time”. Sense & Sensibility stole a piece of my heart immediately. I love the contrasting roles of Elinor and Marianne. Elinor constantly tries to follow proper etiquette and attempt to make others feel at ease. Marianne, genuine and authentic, believes it is more important to live in the moment, at its fullest, with complete honesty. Both are admirable women, even when their views conflict with what they know or what they hope.
The men, compared to Emma and Pride & Prejudice, didn’t stand out as much for me. And I still stand by my decision that Mr. Knightly is the dreamiest.
But Sense & Sensibility didn’t strike me as a romance novel in the same way that Emma and P&P did. Rather, it was much more a commentary of female roles, breaking free from those roles, and growing comfortable in them. Perhaps the most tragic, the love affair between Marianne and John Willoughby was a train wreck to read. How much did I want to tell Willoughby off for being such a wuss! To leave Marianne as ill and wretched as she was because he couldn’t move past his financial placement? I mean, of course I get it. I understand that these were different times, but the “Me” of 21st century sexual politics grows nearly riotous when it comes to this cultural and historical norms, especially when the romantic in me wants love to conquer all.
Oh and also, even though Lucy was hardly someone who I would sip tea with, I couldn’t help but feel bad for her role in the Elinor, Edward, Lucy triangle UNTIL she did that awful unimaginable deed that caused me to go, “Oh no you didn’t!”
Finally, do you guys remember those internet crazes…Celebrity Death Match? Or was it an MTV show? Anyways, I’d love to see Fanny and Lucy duke it out. If there were two women that deserve to be back-stabbing and bitter besties, it’s those two for sure.
Overall, Emma is still my Austen favorite….BUT Sense & Sensibility definitely took second place, leaving Pride & Prejudice resting in at third.