I have been a fan of Jane Austen since I first read Pride and Prejudice when I was eleven years old. Austen may have only written six novels, but they have transcended time. Friends. Romance. Love. Family. Money. Her books are amazing. The characters learn about finding true love, themselves, and what they want from life over the course of her novels, while balancing the changing world around them.
To be completely honest, I’ve read all of her novels multiple times. Although, in all fairness, Mansfield Park and Northanger Abby are not my favorite reads, but Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion truly are. I’ve read Pride and Prejudice so many times that I’ve lost count and Persuasion always makes me cry.
The era of Austen also makes her novels unique among the other novels on my bookshelf. There is something special, reading about characters who are concerned with being proper, dignified, and adhering to rules of society. Juxtaposing this mentality against modern day books or movies makes them even more extraordinary.
Since so many people are a fan of Austen, there are countless websites and mementos people can go on and buy to remind themselves of Austen’s beloved books. For one of my birthdays, I was given a Jane Austen umbrella, in addition to some pieces of jewelry, DVDs, and limited edition books. Being the fan that I am, I even have a movie poster of Pride and Prejudice on my closet door.
Luckily, if you are interested in Austen, there are numerous ways to show your admiration and dedication to her. Some people have created costumes and designed certain homes in honor of the ideas Jane Austen put forward in her works. The estates referenced in the novels are both real and fictional to some degree, such as Chatsworth House, Lyme Park, Lacock Village, and Lincolnshire.
There is even a giant statue depicting Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy in Lyme Park. In the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice, Mr. Darcy goes swimming in his lake at Pemberley and emerges soaking wet with his infamous white shirt. The Guardian even declared the lake scene as “one of the most unforgettable moments in British TV history.”
My advice is to read at least one Jane Austen novel, if you have not already done so. It’s amazing how many movies have been inspired by her novels. If you’ve seen Bridget Jones’s Diary, Clueless, Jane Austen Book Club, JANE the musical or From Prada to Nada, you are watching Jane Austen’s plots come to life. Welcome to the Jane Austen fan club.