Sense and Sensibility
Author: Jane Austen (1811)
jusco’s Rating: ★★★
I’d love to meet a girl like Elinor. Sort of my type of girl; in Japanese terms, the complete opposite of KY. I suppose that’s what the first half of the title alludes to – the ability of one to be able to sense, to read the atmosphere and the feelings of others, the genuine care that emerges from our hearts (compared to the other side where selfishness and exuberant indulgence in self-beneficial pleasures reign). On the other hand, her sister, Marianne, formulates her actions and thoughts more around her emotions at the spur of the moment (thus, sensibility); which isn’t bad to say the least, but quite honestly, without any form of logical processing, could have devastating consequences. The story simply revolves around the two sister’s longing and search for true love.
I knew not of what to expect, for I had only been exposed to one other Jane Austen novel prior to reading this – Pride and Prejudice (read my review here), in all its superiority, did mark out high expectations for this classic novel. Now that I have finished reading it, I can say it doesn’t reach the standard of P&P; though it is understandable considering it was her first novel, and that, in itself, is a major accomplishment to be proud of. The characters in Sense and Sensibility were a bit unsatisfactory, many of them undergoing little development, some even to the point of being extremely irritable. Equipped with a pacing rather slow, it was hard to find the same wittiness or excitement evidenced in P&P.
But even with these faults, it still is a marvelous study on the romantic tendencies of humans. There is a lot to relate to here, and some may even boast of similar experiences. Though the writing isn’t as polished as her later novels, Jane Austen demonstrates why she is a leading literary figure. The biggest disappointment, however, came with the ending. *SPOILERS* (Highlight to read): Personally, I would have liked to see Elinor end up with Colonel Brandon. Both of their undeniable ‘sense’ suited each other very well.