Northanger Abbey (Collector's Library) Hardcover – 1 Feb 2004
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This fully annotated critical edition of Northanger Abbey is based on the text of the novel as published posthumously in 1818. It features an appendix summarising the plots and situations of the Gothic fictions Austen parodied, an extensive critical introduction, a chronology of Austen's life and an authoritative textual apparatus. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
[Coralie Bickford-Smith's] recent work for Penguin Classics is...nothing short of glorious (Anna Cole Co. ) --Anna Cole Co --This text refers to the Paperback edition.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
In constrast with her other novels, Jane Austen's humour is rendered more in the narration than in dialogue. The strength of this novel lies in its simplicity and in its very believable characters. Catherine is not as beautiful, witty or talented as Austen's more popular heriones - Emma or Elizabeth Bennett - but she is extremely likeable. Her simplicity touches a chord and my heart went out to her whenever she was in distress, either in handling her uncouth suitor John Thorpe or being taken for a ride by her 'friend' Isabelle, or when General Tilney abruptly asks her to leave their home, Northanger Abbey.
I was so intrigued by the way the book 'The Mysteries Of Udolpho' had influenced Catherine, that I picked it up to read to know what was in it. Would recommend that book too!
'Northanger Abbey' was a very pleasant book to read; I enjoyed it immensely.
This is probably Jane Austen's easiest, least complex novel. The humour of the novel lies in Catherine's innocence, contrasted with the flirtatious machinations of her friend Isabel, to which Catherine is utterly oblivious, and her fascination with the gothic novel, which leads her to see murderers and mystery all around her. Compared to, say, Emma, or Persuasion, this is a lightweight novel which doesn't operate on very many levels. The characters don't have the same attraction as Elizabeth Bennett and Mr Darcy. However, Austen's ability to portray people's foibles (such as in the exquisitely awful Isabel and her brother John) makes the novel thoroughly enjoyable.
One distinction is that the voice of Jane Austen the narrator is perhaps picked up more clearly here than in her other novels. Here you will find, for example, her minor dissertation in praise of the novel, "... work in which the greatest powers of the mind are displayed, in which the most thorough knowledge of the human nature, the happiest delineation of its varieties, the liveliest effusions of wit and humour are conveyed to the world in the best chosen language".
A second quality is the strong sense of location that emanates from its pages. Jane Austen is rarely a travel guide, but here she conducts the reader around the small English city of Bath.
A third excellence is its depiction of its "heroine" Catherine Moreland, a 17 year-old who gradually learns that reality is not the same as it's depicted in Mrs Radcliffe's novels.
And so it is great fun to read of the novel-reading heroine Catherine finding mortifications and infatuations in Bath. It is fun also to see if "something must and will happen to throw a hero in her way".
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of Jane Austin's best books, very witty and extremely well written and this was a free download for Kindle, what's not to like?Published 3 months ago by Charlie-B
It's ok but I prefer the updated version that I have recently readPublished 4 months ago by Kathleen Edwards
This isn't Austen's most sophisticated work, but May gives a quietly spirited reading all the same. She brings out the irony without over-emphasising it and has a sympathy for the... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Roman Clodia