Monday, April 7, 2014


28. Read a Jane Austen Novel

I've seen some of the movies and they're not really my thing, you know... The 
rules, the prissiness, all the fuss over tea and crumpets... So why would I add 
reading a Jane Austen novel to my 35 Things List?  Well, I was starting to feel 
like I couldn't call myself a woman, especially a Mormon woman living in Utah, 
if I hadn't read at least one of her books.  It might be a greater transgression than not 
having a homemade wreath you found on Pinterest hanging from your front door. 
(Oh, don't get offended.  You know you have one.)

I chose Pride and Prejudice, because I hadn't seen it on film or television and 
I didn't want my preconceived notions interfering with my reaction to the book.  
Plus, if I didn't read it soon, my friend Marianne wasn't going to let me come 
visit her in Montana anymore.  She's not Mormon, which piqued my curiousity even 
more, since apparently a love of Jane Austen is more than just a Utah stereotype.  

I got off to a slow start.  The book is a quick 292 pages and I started the darn 
thing back in November.  I re-read the first 30 pages three times and I never 
could get to that precipice of interest that causes you to keep turning pages 
even though you have a million things to do, a house that needs to be cleaned 
and kids that show no mercy in the morning.  I never gave up though... It was on 
the list, after all... And I'm glad I stuck with it.  Jane Austen's descriptions 
transport you right into the uncomfortable moments and with the subtle sarcasm, 
I could tell she thought that era was as silly as I do.  If I had lived back 
then, we could have been witty old maids together.  (Are you really being
judgmental if you are funny?)

I didn't fall in love with Mr. Darcy like I had been warned I would.  Don't get 
me wrong, I appreciate a man who can swallow his pride, admit when he's wrong, 
not give up on a girl and swoop in to save the day.... But I am far too American 
to fall in love with such a reserved character.  I had ancestors fleeing from 
Great Britain on the Mayflower.  I am not really a stuffed shirt kind of 
girl.... In fact, why wear a shirt at all.  Can we talk about Four from 
Divergent for a second... Hubba...  Hubba!  Sorry about that.  I promise I'm 
back on track.  You get the idea though.  Ever since I saw a shirtless Brad Pitt 
in Thelma and Louise, I've had exactly one type of fantasy man and a rule 
following Brit ain't it.  I still get a little irked about Mr. Darcy's initial proposal.  
Are you kidding me!  

Over all, I liked it and even though an I Heart Mr. Darcy shirt isn't on my 
Christmas list, I loved her characters, story and sense of humor.  The book was 
worth reading for Elizabeth's father's comments alone.  He had me laughing out 
loud and that's not easy in a book that takes place in a time period that has me 
shouting Votes For Women in my head.