Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

Good books and good authors are classics. The words they write, the impressions they convey seem as fresh as ever. Jane Austen is one of my favourite authors. And Northanger Abbey is a book…which I have must read at least twenty times. Seems excessive? There is just something about this book which strikes a chord with me, I guess. The heroine of this book, Catherine, does not appeal to me much. As Jane Austen herself admits, she is nothing out of the ordinary. But Isabella Thorpe, Catherine’s conniving, money-minded friend, with her easy lies and lofty declarations is a pleasure to read. She is like Becky in the Vanity Fair. You can hate her or you can like her but you can certainly not disregard her. Henry Tilney the hero is all that a hero should be. He is charming, he is witty and I always think he could have done better than Catherine. But Austen has an interesting explanation for that! I love Jane Austen! So easily does her pen flow that you can actually imagine yourself in Bath dancing in the lower rooms attended by a respectable young man. If looked at dispassionately, the entire book is nothing more than a summary of a young lady’s first spree to Bath. But the words have magic and they transform it into what it really is, a great piece of work!

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