Book review: Sense & Sensibility (Jane Austen)

Title: Sense & Sensibility
Author: Jane Austen
Page count: 256 (Wordsworth classics hardcover)
Rating: 2/5 stars on Goodreads

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(This review is spoilerfree, in as much as a book this old can still be spoilerfree to begin with.)


Let me start this review by explaining how long I`ve put off reading this book: 7 years. Give or take one year more, maybe. But at least 7 years. You see, my English teacher back in high school had a whole row of books in his classroom that the school library was throwing out. He`d periodically go through the stacks of books that were being removed and put them in his classroom for his students to take for free. Admirable, though somewhat pointless in a school filled with teenagers who Do Not Care about English literature. His enthusiasm when someone (i.e. me) does show an interest was enough proof that no one ever showed interest. I was just browsing the row, being a book addict since I could read sitting next to a row of free books, saw this title, thought “that sounds vaguely familiar” and tried to take it with me and leave, except that of course my teacher saw me and was so happy that he kept talking for another 15 minutes or so until I pointed out that school was out and I really wanted to go home now.

Apparently I wasn`t interested enough to actually read it though. I remember trying sometime last year, and not getting through the first couple of pages. It`s a sign that I`ve been learning that I could read the old fashioned English so much easier now.

Still though, the book itself was not worth dragging around for this long. At least I learned that now.

I`m glad to have read it. I`m really, really glad to finally have it gone from my to-read stack and on my bookshelves so I can point at it and say “I read that”. Now if I`d actually really enjoyed reading it, it would`ve been perfect, but alas. I thought it was quite boring. Not much happened. And as someone who`s used to more adventurous books with action! Excitement! Explosions! Sword battles! Sudden death! This was very calm and boring.

I`ve been told this is not one of Austen`s best books and that her other books are more “spunky” (not my words), but that is a very reassuring thought. I might still give Emma or Pride & Prejudice a go at some point.
At least it does feel like a proper achievement that I`ve finally read it. Finishing it was very satisfying.

So if you like these type of historical books, then go for it! I`m just not sure these are for me.

(Book 3 for Booktober is Victor Hugo`s The Hunchback of the Notre Dame, in a Dutch translation because I could get that one with a personnel discount 2 years ago. I am horrible with actually reading what I buy, as is obvious by the several years a lot of books spend on my to-read stack.)

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