Lady Susan

4 Jul

Jane Austen: Seven Novels(PICK IT)

Author: Jane Austen

Genre: Classics

First Published: 1871

Page Count: 45

Type: Hardcover

Film/ TV Adaptation: Yes*

Rating: 3/5 Stars

Written in the form of letters, Lady Susan is the funniest, sassiest story in Austen’s collection.


*Lady Susan Character


*Story Format

“Facts are such horrid things!” Recently widowed Lady Susan Vernon has invited herself to stay at her brother-in-law, Charles Vernon’s, house where she is soon joined by her young daughter Frederica. Chaos ensues when Lady Susan takes a liking to her sister in law’s brother, Reginald, and she tries to arrange a marriage between her daughter and a dolt named Sir James. Will things go as Lady Susan planned or will her carefully crafted schemes go downhill?

The feel of Lady Susan is much different then the other books in her collection. I know this because I’ve finally completed my goal of reading every single one! The main character, Lady Susan, is Austen’s most crafty character. She uses her beauty and wit to talk herself in and out of any situation. She is such a sassy, tart of a woman as is seen her correspondences with her equally sassy friend Mrs. Johnson. She is very self-serving in how she treats her daughter and other family members, but it makes for the funniest, most over the top character in all of Austen’s novels.

This book is a bit different from the other Austen novels in that the story is revealed entirely through letters. It is clever but not the clearest way of reading a story. I applaud her for being able to pull off a plot entirely using letters but I felt like we were potentially missing a lot of key scenes. We are stuck relying on whatever the characters choose to write in their letters. Having watched the film adaptation of this book, Love and Friendship, I much preferred the story in that version because it felt seamless watching it scene by scene. You don’t get that when you are limited to letters.

If you are a die-hard Jane Austen fan, you’re gonna have to check this one out despite the fact that it is a short book and written in letter format. Lady Susan is one of her best characters and the light hearted nature of the story makes it one of her most fun stories to read. If you aren’t an Austen nut, I’d suggest sticking to one of her more popular books like Pride and Prejudice. Also check out the film adaptation of this book, which is not only faithful to the book, but improves upon it with Kate Beckinsale playing the perfect Lady Susan.

* Film Adaptation: (Starring Kate Beckinsale 2016)


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