Skip to main content

The Jane Austen Book Club: Northanger Abbey + Giveaway Winner!

Thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway! I hope the show will be amazing, and congratulations to the winner!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Now, on to the meat and potatoes of this blog: The Jane Austen Book Club!

Truthfully, I did get a little busy in September, and reading carried over into October, but for the most part, it was read in September.

I do think that Northanger Abbey is my least favorite of the Jane Austen novels. The first part is all very fun, and witty, and I can definitely laugh about all of Catherine and Isabella's shananigans. But the first part was also unsettling, as I saw Catherine's naivitee in me, especially in her friendship with Isabella.

Catherine Morland, our heroine, was the oldest daughter of a country minister and his wife, and was invited to go to Bath for the social season with neighbors. Apparently, that was a thing back in the day, and the first few days Catherine and her chaperone, Mrs. Allan, had no one to talk to at the balls and plays they went to. It was considered improper to introduce yourself to random strangers (probably presumptuous), so they mostly kept to themselves, and people watched.

That would instantly kill my mood and desire to be there, if I couldn't talk to anyone (despite being pretty introverted, and only into my own friends, I'd try to get to know people). Luckily, it didn't last long because Mrs. Allan's childhood friend and her family arrived. Catherine is introduced to Isabella Thorpe, who charms her into friendly submission.

It's amazing who you'll meet in a Jane Austen novel. Isabella is exactly the person most people are drawn to for short periods of time: Someone who can be fun, interesting, extremely sweet, but at the same time, self-serving, vile, and malicious. She is basically Regina George.

Throughout the first half of the story, Regina -- I mean, Isabella! -- befriends Catherine under the pretense of friendship, but uses her for her own gains. While being courted by Catherine's brother, James, she pushes her own brother, John (who is quite pushy, himself) at Catherine, ignoring Catherine's feelings for Henry Tilney, whose sister, Eleanor, is also a new friend to Catherine. Isabella is the girl who claims to hate drama, but airs all of her dirty laundry on facebook.

I also related to Catherine's feelings for Isabella's brother, John. The man was pushy, proud, opinionated, and tried to convince Catherine to feel something sooner than she was ready. She tried to be kind, she tried to be polite, especially because of her friendship with Isabella, and because of John's friendship with James. Apparently, because your brother has a good friend, that basically means you're his future wife.

Thank God for calm, rational people like Henry and Eleanor Tilney. These were two people interested in Catherine, for herself, and were potentially lonely people looking for a friend. They loved Catherine for herself, and nothing more. These are the people that everyone hopes to find one day.

The second half of the book is where it got a bit strange, to me. Catherine went to Northanger Abbey with Eleanor, Henry, and their father, General Tilney. No amount of pleading from Isabella could stop her, either. It was nice that for once Catherine was able to show some backbone.

I didn't care for the second half of the book. It was slow moving, but once it was done, I felt it moved too quickly into a resolution. Catherine and Henry falling in love was obvious, but she did almost lose him due to her immaturity, and inablility to understand the difference between real life and stories.
Though, I do relate.

Emma Approved (c) Pemberley Digital
I'm dying to hear if anyone else read Northanger Abbey this month, too! What are your thoughts? Met any Johns or Isabellas that made your life a living hell? How about your own Henry Tilney? 


  1. Hi Rebekah!

    I have never read any of Jane Austen's work; I tried once and was bored out of my mind ha ha. But you have sparked some interest in me! Loved your review, and your hilarious accompanying memes. Very entertaining! I might just give Northanger Abbey a try... xoxo

    1. Hey, Ashley! If you can't get through it, watch the 2007 (?) movie version with Felicity Jones and JJ Field. It does a good job of conveying information faster than the book. :-) Plus, JJ Field is adorable.

  2. I actually quite love Henry Tilney. He is my second favourite Austen hero :) and your review is great. Laughed out loud at the regina george part, brilliant!

    1. Henry is great. He's very funny, but can be serious when he needs to be. It's very easy to fall in love with him.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

I'm Moving!

Talk about a long hiatus!

So, things have been happening, or rather, things have been stalling, and I've decided that I need to actually do things in order to achieve what I want to in life. Where I want my writing to go, and what I want to dedicate my blog to.

When I first started MJA I had no idea what I wanted in a blog. I just wanted to write, and I hoped that the readers would follow me. And it took awhile, but you have! But I've been terrible at keeping up with this blog because I was trying to turn it into something that it just couldn't be.

I'm an author, first and foremost, and upon meeting other writers, I've learned so much and want to pass on that education to others, like they've passed on to me.

That said, The Modern Jane Austen isn't going to be getting updates anymore. This is a blog where I wrote about my life, some reviews here and there, and just a few tidbits about my writing journey. But it was mostly a confused mess, IMO, and I've …

September Musings on Writing

Another year has gone by.

I'm 20 days out from my 31st birthday.

I'm 24 days out from embarking on my first cruise to Canada.

I'm thismuch closer to finishing a second manuscript this year.

So, it's shaping up to be a pretty exciting month for me. I'd REALLY like to finish both manuscripts so that I can get to working on their second drafts before NaNoWriMo kicks off in November.

Yes. I'm using my thirties as I should've used my twenties: As someone who wants to write books for a living. Novel concept right?

But honestly. Six years ago when I started at my current job, I was under the illusion that what happened to Amanda Hocking would happen to me. Haha! I was so cute and naive when I was 25.

The last year or so, I've tried really hard to understand what it means to be an independent or self-published author. How you have to put your best work out there, not just the crappy first draft that you were just relieved to finish. That editors want to help yo…

Free Money! 3 Tips For Giving Plasma

Today, I wanted to talk to you about giving Plasma. Plasma is the liquid part of your blood that carries your blood cells all around your body. When you give plasma, they use it to make medication, and it also helps patients who have experienced trauma, have bleeding disorders, and more. I started giving Plasma back in 2007 when gas prices were upwards of $4 a gallon in Missouri, where I was living and needed all the extra money I could get. At the time, I got about $40/donation, but now I give through OctaPharma here in CB, with different pricing (It varies based on your weight).

It hasn't always been easy, though. A few years ago, I was unable to keep giving, and I couldn't figure out why. When I went back to try to raise money for an upcoming vacation the first few times I tried, my protein levels were either too low or at the bare minimum, so I thought I'd share some tips that help.

1. Three hours before you go, start eating something with protein.  I usually give in t…