Thursday, February 23, 2012

Romance Annotation - "Persuasion" by Jane Austen

I had chosen to do a "classic" in the romance genre, and who is a more classic romance author than Miss Jane Austen? I have been an Austen fan for a very long time, but the only book I had held out on reading was Persuasion. Why, you ask? Well, I had always read/been told that Persuasion was different than the rest of Austen's work and I took that to mean that I would not necessarily enjoy it as much as my favorite, Pride and Prejudice. While it is true that I did not enjoy it as much as Pride and Prejudice, I did actually enjoy Persuasion quite a bit.

Persuasion tells the story of Anne Elliot, the middle child of a vain and flighty baronet named Sir Walter. He and her older sister, Elizabeth, are more concerned with their social lives than about protecting the inheritance. This leads to them overspending and being forced to rent out their family estate to the Crofts. The Crofts are in-laws to Captain Frederick Wentworth, whom, seven years earlier, was engaged to Anne. Anne broke off the engagement at the time due to the influence of her family and friends who felt that Wentworth was not a good match for her as he had nothing to his name.

However, Wentworth has returned a rich man due to his success in the navy, and he has not forgiven Anne for breaking their engagement and does not know that Anne has been loyal to him all these years and still loves him. Anne must suffer through watching Wentworth court other ladies in front of her, all the while dealing with the unwanted affections of a distant cousin who the family hopes for her to marry. She does not trust him, as he has a mysterious and somewhat shady past.

Does Wentworth still love Anne? Will he ever be able to forgive her?

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