- May 26 & 27 - All libraries CLOSED for Memorial Day
Persuasion, Jane Austen's last completed novel, satirizes social status and emotional turmoil with her famed wit and ironic style. Not just any love story – Penguin Classics has compared the romantic narrative to the well-loved fairy tale, “Cinderella,” in the characters, conflict, and aspects of plot. However, this tale is distinguished by the resplendence of literary beauty that is both philosophical and awe-inspiring: the impact of the theme, ‘persuasion,’ is recounted in a cleverly woven path that directs the heroine to her eventual felicity.
Intrigued with the return of her former beau -- Captain Wentworth -- from eight and half years prior, Anne Elliott is placed in the uncomfortable position of remaining in company with him while he is courting another! Austen displays the pain and agony of his return, the unspoken words, and misunderstandings that continue to evolve and devolve in the plot. Along with that conflict is an underlying tension from the recommendations of Lady Russell, who discouraged the engagement all those years ago in the first place.
Gillian Beer explains that Austen was perceptive that the ability to persuade or to be persuaded is crucial in regards to communication. Beer states: "... Jane Austen gradually draws out the implications of discriminating 'just' and 'unjust' persuasion." That is, the narrative displays a profusion of variations of those inducing, or attempting to entice, others—or themselves. Finally, Beer describes Austen's work as: "… the novel's entire brooding on the power pressures, the seductions, and also the new pathways opened by persuasion.” Although, erudite in tone, Persuasion is in effect, a treatise on Austen’s personal challenges with similar phenomena in her own familial relationships. It is one of the most fascinating and enduring novels ever!
A fabulous read!