Persuasion is a classic story I recently decided to read with a Youtube friend. The story is one that is well known, but I have never read it. This was not my first Jane Austen book since I have read Pride and Prejudice before, but this was a whole new experience.
First, I listed to this on audio book instead of reading it on my Kindle or in traditional form. The reason for this was simply because I did not have a physical copy of it and I did not want to read it on my Kindle. I am glad I listened to it because it made the story that much more engaging.
This is the description from Goodreads: “Anne Elliot has grieved for seven years over the loss of her first and only love, Captain Frederick Wentworth. When their paths finally cross again, Anne finds herself slighted and all traces of their former intimacy gone. As the pair continue to share the same social circle, dramatic events in Lyme Regis, and later in Bath, conspire to unravel the knots of deceit and misunderstanding in this beguiling and gently comic story of love and fidelity.”
I must confess that I did not completely understand this story. I was able to put the pieces together but I did not really understand the language used. That did not detract from the enjoyment of trying to wrap my brain around it. Keep in mind that I was a Literature major in college and we never read this book (shocking, I know). With all that being said, I enjoyed Anne as a character and I felt for her in many ways. She was constrained by the time of the novel and by her own feelings of hurt and frustration. It made her a likable and semi-relatable character.
As far as the other characters go, I did not like Captain Wentworth at the beginning but as the story progressed, I understood him a bit more. He had gone through a lot of different things and it was as if he simply stopped loving Anne after so long, which does happen sometimes. By the end of the book, I did not hate him as much but still disliked him a bit. The other characters in the book were all secondary and therefore, did not mean as much to me.
The pacing of the story was good. It did not drag on as most classics tend to do. I also enjoyed the setting of the novel and the descriptions that Jane gives of those places. My only complaint, and why I gave it four stars instead of five is because it was difficult to understand, even for a classic. I do think I will pick up another Jane Austen book at some other point, but it will be a while.
In conclusion, I am giving Persuasion by Jane Austen 4/5 stars. I recommend it to anyone who enjoys classics set in the Victorian time period.