Synopses & Reviews
When Elizabeth Bennet first meets eligible bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited; he is indifferent to her good looks and lively mind. When she later discovers that Darcy has involved himself in the troubled relationship between his friend Bingley and her beloved sister Jane, she is determined to dislike him more than ever. In the sparkling comedy of manners that follows, Jane Austen shows the folly of judging by first impressions and superbly evokes the friendships, gossip and snobberies of provincial middle-class life.
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Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
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Elizabeth Bennet, the second eldest of five daughter whom Mrs. Bennet is anxious to dispose of in marriage, is the most intelligent and delightful of all Jane Austen's heroines. Her vitality, vivacity and wit, her hasty dismissal of superior Mr. Darcy-- the most disagreeable man in the world'--how he improves his manners and she changes her mind, are the central ingredients of "Pride and Prejudice. It is Jane Austen's best-loved novel and through the depth and sparkle of its comedy we are encouraged to consider what balance of energy and order, playfulness and regulation constitutes real strength of character.
About the Author
Jane Austen was born on December 16, 1775 at Steventon near Basingstoke, the seventh child of the rector of the parish. She lived with her family at Steventon until they moved to Bath when her father retired in 1801. After his death in 1805, she moved around with her mother; in 1809, they settled in Chawton, near Alton, Hampshire. Here she remained, except for a few visits to London, until in May 1817 she moved to Winchester to be near her doctor. There she died on July 18, 1817.
As a girl Jane Austen wrote stories, including burlesques of popular romances. Her works were only published after much revision, four novels being published in her lifetime. These are Sense and Sensibility (1811), Pride and Prejudice (1813), Mansfield Park (1814) and Emma (1816). Two other novels, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, were published posthumously in 1818 with a biographical notice by her brother, Henry Austen, the first formal announcement of her authorship. Persuasion was written in a race against failing health in 1815-16. She also left two earlier compositions, a short epistolary novel, Lady Susan, and an unfinished novel, The Watsons. At the time of her death, she was working on a new novel, Sanditon, a fragmentary draft of which survives.