Emma by Jane Austen
This book gets five out of five chickadees singing! I have read Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, and Persuasion by Jane Austen and this is by far my favorite Jane Austen book out of the three. Emma is the main character. She is well-to-do and lives with her peculiar and strongly opinionated father. Emma has no interest in getting married, but that does not stop her from interfering with everybody else’s love lives. Her matchmaking attempts for her dear friend Harriet (a very naive, but sweet girl) go hopelessly and hilariously awry. As the reader, you probably know what’s going to happen, but you remain interested because you want to see the characters’ reactions to Emma’s misunderstandings.
Emma vows not to get involved in others’ lives anymore under the advice of her good friend Knightly. A new character and possible love interest for Emma arrives to town in the character of Frank Churchill. Will Emma actually end up with someone or stay single forever like she plans?
I feel that Emma is certainly Austen’s most humorous book. Austen is always witty, but particularly so in the character of the very clever and witty Emma. The characters in this novel are more interesting and realistically flawed in this book than in her others. They also add to the novel’s humor. For example, Emma’s father is so very particular and quite distressed when others don’t share his opinion (to gruel being one of the best dinners to the fact that people ought not to get married). The other characters do their best to humor his odd tastes. I also enjoyed the possible love interests in Emma, without giving any spoilers away. Additionally, the book has an important message about not messing around in other people’s lives.
After reading Emma, you’ll be amazed at the similarities of its plot compared to many current chick lit books and movies (which I will not name for fear of spoiling their endings). You’ll also understand why this charming book continues to be a model for authors today.