Persuasion, I must admit, is one of the novels that I was able to experience for the first time over the last few months. What a treat that it was such a wonderful read. It has definitely become a new favorite. It comes as no surprise that Austen’s last novel would be her most accomplished. After many years of improving skills as a writer, I would think you could only get better unless, and sorry to be depressing, your inspiration has a peak. However, I was not prepared for the novel to be such a triumph.
Anne Elliot is an incredibly well-rounded character. I found her emotional depth truly touching. So many of Austen’s heroine’s express their emotions outwardly. Sure, some out louder than others, even Elinor’s repressed pain bubbled over into euphoria, but Anne held steadfast and expressed her joys and sorrows in subtleties. I cannot read Anne without seeing Jane Austen. I think that she channeled a full life into this novel. Family, mistakes, heartaches, and love and the lines blurred between them. Austen gave up much in her life, but she maintained her wit, and if her novels are anything to judge by, she maintained her optimism as well. I sincerely hope so. And if not, I hope her wonderful stories were a comfort to her.