Mansfield Park (Penguin Classics)

Jane Austen
Listen to audio presented by Literary Affairs: Jane Austen's Mansfield Park.View our feature on Jane Austen.Begun in 1811 at the height of Jane Austen's writing powers and published in 1814, Mansfield Park marks a conscious break from the tone of her first three novels, Northanger Abbey, Sense and Sensibility, and Pride and Prejudice, the last of which Austen came to see as "rather too light." Fanny Price is unlike any of Austen's previous heroines, a girl from a poor family brought up in a splendid country house and possessed of a vast reserve of moral fortitude and imperturbability. She is very different from Elizabeth Bennet, but is the product of the same inspired imagination.

Reviews

Reviewed: 2016-06-24
This is the first Jane Austen book that I ever read. I thoroughly enjoyed it, although I have to say that the beginning was a bit tedious, as it seemed that Jane was trying to introduce every character all at once.

Once I got into the book, I was completely engrossed in it. I love books that give you a look into another time, place or culture, and I have to say that Jane Austen's books do that for me.

I couldn't really identify with Fanny, but then again, it's hard for a modern woman to completely understand and empathize with the types of issues that women had to deal with in the time that Fanny would have lived. I could understand her perspective based on her character and the information that was given in the book, and based on that, I liked her and her story -- even more so because she had the courage to defy convention (and her uncle directly) by refusing to sacrifice her own happiness and enter into a marriage based solely on money.

I did not exactly like most of the other characters, who seemed conniving and selfish, although admittedly that could just be in direct comparison to Fanny's morality.

Anyway, this is one book that I read often, and I always enjoy it.
Reviewed: 2016-03-04
I love this story. It is a more likely scenario then Pride and Prejudice or Sense and Sensibility, though I love those as well. As is the standard with Austen the protagonist is a girl growing into womanhood. She suffers from the characteristics that most of us can relate to from some period in our lives. Fanny is quite, shy, ruled by her principles and in love with a man she thinks she cannot have. She watches him fall in love with another, suffers distress over watching him love a woman that is of lower character than he is, and is supportive anyway because it is who she is. As would be expected, in the end, her love realizes his mistake and loves Fanny all the better for having proven to be the better person.

It's a nice story and I would recommend it to anyone who loves classic love stories.
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