So far in my journey through Austen I have been 1-1. I loved Pride and Prejudice and really disliked Emma. I needed a tie-breaker so I dove into Sense and Sensibility. I'm pleased to announce that the score is now 2-1. I didn't like it as well as P&P but I still enjoyed it quite a bit.
As I read I couldn't help but compare the relationship of the two Dashwood sisters to myself and my older sister. My sister and I are definitely not as close as Elinor and Marianne but the similarities in our own characters and that of the Dashwoods was there. My sister is a lot like Elinor Dashwood. She's responsible, steady, full of common sense, and usually more in control of her emotions than yours truly. I am much more like Marianne, impulsive, led by emotions, and tend to jump into situations or relationships without thinking them through all the way. I rather enjoyed reading through and comparing the actions of the sisters with what I or my sister would do.
I ended up being quite emotionally invested into the story right from the beginning. The way the Dashwood ladies are pretty much thrown out on their asses by their own brother just broke my heart. Who does that? Apparently spineless men who have snobby, horrible wives. I hated Fanny with a passion right from the start and was secretly hoping a random house would suddenly fall on her. From there on out it was an endless stream of relationship troubles. There was enough drama, secrets and lies going around in that little town that they could create their own soap opera. I'll admit, though, that near the end I was getting confused as to who was in love with whom and how it had happened. In the end, it all works out as it should, of course, so my little romantic heart was happy with it.
I do still have Mansfield Park to cross off my list but I think I'll be taking a bit of a break from Austen for awhile. I am getting a little sick of parties, visiting neighbors and all of the Austen properness. I am thinking about sticking to the general time frame and moving over to Paris and Les Miserables. I haven't read it, or seen the play/movie except maybe a snippet of a song performance here and there. (My theater obsessed mother-in-law would probably smack me upside the head if she knew that) I'm a little scared of taking on such a huge book though.