Emma – Jane Austen
Emma – Emma, by Jane Austen, is a novel about youthful hubris and the perils of misconstrued romance and was the last of her six novels to be completed, written while she was in Chawton. The story takes place in the fictional village of Highbury and the surrounding estates of Hartfield, Randalls, and Donwell Abbey and involves the relationships among individuals in those locations consisting of “3 or 4 families in a country village”. The novel was first published in December 1815. As in her other novels, Austen explores the concerns and difficulties of genteel women living in Georgian–Regency England; she also creates a lively comedy of manners among her characters and depicts issues of marriage, gender, age, and social status.
Before she began the novel, Austen wrote, “I am going to take a heroine whom no one but myself will much like.” In the first sentence, she introduces the title character as “Emma Woodhouse, handsome, clever, and rich.” Emma is spoiled, headstrong, and self-satisfied; she greatly overestimates her own matchmaking abilities; she is blind to the dangers of meddling in other people’s lives; and her imagination and perceptions often lead her astray.
This novel has been adapted for several films, many television programmes, and a long list of stage plays. It is also the inspiration for several novels.
So I just wanted to let others know that this collection is one giant book of all Austen novels combined. You can’t tell from the picture, but I was actually expecting (and hoping for) individual books packed in one box like other book collections I have. So I was definitely a bit disappointed when I received this book. And while I am used to reading large books like David McCullough biographies, this compilation is by far the heaviest I have in my possession. I’m not sure I will be able to read this in bed or even hold it up in my arms for any long period of time. So beware. I would have chosen differently if had this information when I was contemplating purchase.
Jane Austen was born in 1775 in rural Hampshire, the daughter of an affluent village rector who encouraged her in her artistic pursuits. Jane remained in the vicinity of her childhood home for much of her life. As such it was through family and friends that she learned most of her considerable understanding of manners and relationships. In novels such as Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park and Emma she developed her subtle analysis of contemporary life through depictions of the middle-classes in small towns. Her sharp wit and incisive portraits of ordinary people have given her novels enduring popularity. She died in 1817.
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