My month-long Austen Marathon has turned into a 4-month literary journey. In those four months, I didn’t devour Austen’s works the way I imagined I would. Instead, I went through every novel meticulously, reading and rereading specific pages. I wasn’t merely enjoying Austen’s novels, I was studying them. I was in awe of Jane Austen’s tremendous talent. I was green with envy and lily yellow with despair.
I tried to look at each work as if I were seeing it for the first time—and I succeeded, mainly because of Austen’s terrific storytelling. Whether it’s a first-time or an nth-time read, Austen’s novels always offers something new to the reader. I suppose, that’s why I’m making some changes to my Austen list of favorites.
The following shows the results of my 2012/2013 Austen Marathon.
Top Three Works:
- 1. Persuasion. I find this the most realistic and ‘mature’ of all of Austen’s novels.
- 2. Sense and Sensibility. Because I will always look up to Elinor Dashwood and her tremendous strength.
- 3. Pride and Prejudice. How could one not root for Lizzie and Mr. Darcy?
Top Three Heroines:
- 1. Elinor Dashwood (Sense and Sensibility)
- 2. Anne Elliott (Persuasion)
- 3. Lizzie Bennet (Pride and Prejudice)
Top Three Male Characters:
- 1. Captain James Benwick (Persuasion)
- 2. Henry Tilney (Northanger Abbey)
- 3. Fitzwilliam Darcy (Pride and Prejudice)
Top Three Villains:
- 1. Isabella Thorpe (Northanger Abbey)
- 2. John Thorpe (Northanger Abbey)
- 3. Lucy Steele (Sense and Sensibility)
Least Favorite Characters: Lydia Bennett (Pride and Prejudice)
Runner-Up: Philip Elton (Emma)
Funniest Characters: Charlotte and Mr. Palmer (Sense and Sensibility)
Runner-Up: Sir Walter Elliott (Persuasion)
Least Favorite Work: Mansfield Park. It’s no longer as bad as I used to think it was, but it’s still not as good as Austen’s other works. At least, in my opinion.