Mansfield Park

Mansfield Park

by Jane Austen

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Overview

A shy young woman discovers her true power in this poignant love story from one of the world’s most cherished authors

The eldest of nine children born to a naval lieutenant with a meager pension, Fanny Price is sent to live with wealthy relatives at Mansfield Park. Only ten years old, she is nervous around her rich cousins and uncomfortable in their grand house. And as the years pass, Fanny comes to believe that she will never truly feel at home. Only Edmund Bertram makes life worth living.
 
He is the only one of her cousins who is kind to her, a gentle soul whom she has loved since childhood. But when the worldly and charismatic Crawford siblings, Henry and Mary, arrive from London and ensnare the Bertram family in a complicated web of romance and intrigue, Fanny worries that her relationship with Edmund will never be the same. To win his heart, she must keep her head—a task that becomes all the more difficult when her family pressures her to accept Henry Crawford’s unexpected marriage proposal.
 
Widely regarded to be Jane Austen’s first mature novel, Mansfield Park subtly critiques the snobbery of English society by celebrating the virtues of its unassuming yet profoundly compelling heroine.
 
This ebook has been professionally proofread to ensure accuracy and readability on all devices. 
 

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781504033855
Publisher: Open Road Media
Publication date: 02/09/2016
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 347
Sales rank: 30,228
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

Jane Austen (1775–1817) was an English novelist known for her fiction set among England’s landed gentry. She was the seventh of eight children and was educated mostly at home in Hampshire. Her best-known works include Pride and PrejudiceSense and Sensibility, Mansfield Park, and Emma. Although her novels, all of which were published anonymously, did not bring her fame during her lifetime, she is now one of the most widely read writers in the English language. 
Jane Austen (1775–1817) was an English novelist known for her fiction set among England’s landed gentry. She was the seventh of eight children and was educated mostly at home in Hampshire. Her best-known works include Pride and PrejudiceSense and Sensibility, Mansfield Park, and Emma. Although her novels, all of which were published anonymously, did not bring her fame during her lifetime, she is now one of the most widely read writers in the English language. 

Date of Birth:

December 16, 1775

Date of Death:

July 18, 1817

Place of Birth:

Village of Steventon in Hampshire, England

Place of Death:

Winchester, Hampshire, England

Education:

Taught at home by her father

Read an Excerpt

Mansfield Park


By Jane Austen

OPEN ROAD INTEGRATED MEDIA

Copyright © 2016 Jane Austen
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-5040-3385-5


CHAPTER 1

ABOUT THIRTY YEARS AGO MISS Maria Ward, of Huntingdon, with only seven thousand pounds, had the good luck to captivate Sir Thomas Bertram, of Mansfield Park, in the county of Northampton, and to be thereby raised to the rank of a baronet's lady, with all the comforts and consequences of an handsome house and large income. All Huntingdon exclaimed on the greatness of the match, and her uncle, the lawyer, himself, allowed her to be at least three thousand pounds short of any equitable claim to it. She had two sisters to be benefited by her elevation; and such of their acquaintance as thought Miss Ward and Miss Frances quite as handsome as Miss Maria, did not scruple to predict their marrying with almost equal advantage. But there certainly are not so many men of large fortune in the world as there are pretty women to deserve them. Miss Ward, at the end of half a dozen years, found herself obliged to be attached to the Rev. Mr. Norris, a friend of her brother-in-law, with scarcely any private fortune, and Miss Frances fared yet worse. Miss Ward's match, indeed, when it came to the point, was not contemptible: Sir Thomas being happily able to give his friend an income in the living of Mansfield; and Mr. and Mrs. Norris began their career of conjugal felicity with very little less than a thousand a year. But Miss Frances married, in the common phrase, to disoblige her family, and by fixing on a lieutenant of marines, without education, fortune, or connexions, did it very thoroughly. She could hardly have made a more untoward choice. Sir Thomas Bertram had interest, which, from principle as well as pride — from a general wish of doing right, and a desire of seeing all that were connected with him in situations of respectability, he would have been glad to exert for the advantage of Lady Bertram's sister; but her husband's profession was such as no interest could reach; and before he had time to devise any other method of assisting them, an absolute breach between the sisters had taken place. It was the natural result of the conduct of each party, and such as a very imprudent marriage almost always produces. To save herself from useless remonstrance, Mrs. Price never wrote to her family on the subject till actually married. Lady Bertram, who was a woman of very tranquil feelings, and a temper remarkably easy and indolent, would have contented herself with merely giving up her sister, and thinking no more of the matter; but Mrs. Norris had a spirit of activity, which could not be satisfied till she had written a long and angry letter to Fanny, to point out the folly of her conduct, and threaten her with all its possible ill consequences. Mrs. Price, in her turn, was injured and angry; and an answer, which comprehended each sister in its bitterness, and bestowed such very disrespectful reflections on the pride of Sir Thomas as Mrs. Norris could not possibly keep to herself, put an end to all intercourse between them for a considerable period.

Their homes were so distant, and the circles in which they moved so distinct, as almost to preclude the means of ever hearing of each other's existence during the eleven following years, or, at least, to make it very wonderful to Sir Thomas that Mrs. Norris should ever have it in her power to tell them, as she now and then did, in an angry voice, that Fanny had got another child. By the end of eleven years, however, Mrs. Price could no longer afford to cherish pride or resentment, or to lose one connexion that might possibly assist her. A large and still increasing family, an husband disabled for active service, but not the less equal to company and good liquor, and a very small income to supply their wants, made her eager to regain the friends she had so carelessly sacrificed; and she addressed Lady Bertram in a letter which spoke so much contrition and despondence, such a superfluity of children, and such a want of almost everything else, as could not but dispose them all to a reconciliation. She was preparing for her ninth lying-in; and after bewailing the circumstance, and imploring their countenance as sponsors to the expected child, she could not conceal how important she felt they might be to the future maintenance of the eight already in being. Her eldest was a boy of ten years old, a fine spirited fellow, who longed to be out in the world; but what could she do? Was there any chance of his being hereafter useful to Sir Thomas in the concerns of his West Indian property? No situation would be beneath him; or what did Sir Thomas think of Woolwich? or how could a boy be sent out to the East?

The letter was not unproductive. It re-established peace and kindness. Sir Thomas sent friendly advice and professions, Lady Bertram dispatched money and baby-linen, and Mrs. Norris wrote the letters.

Such were its immediate effects, and within a twelvemonth a more important advantage to Mrs. Price resulted from it. Mrs. Norris was often observing to the others that she could not get her poor sister and her family out of her head, and that, much as they had all done for her, she seemed to be wanting to do more; and at length she could not but own it to be her wish that poor Mrs. Price should be relieved from the charge and expense of one child entirely out of her great number. "What if they were among them to undertake the care of her eldest daughter, a girl now nine years old, of an age to require more attention than her poor mother could possibly give? The trouble and expense of it to them would be nothing, compared with the benevolence of the action." Lady Bertram agreed with her instantly. "I think we cannot do better," said she; "let us send for the child."

Sir Thomas could not give so instantaneous and unqualified a consent. He debated and hesitated; — it was a serious charge; — a girl so brought up must be adequately provided for, or there would be cruelty instead of kindness in taking her from her family. He thought of his own four children, of his two sons, of cousins in love, etc.; — but no sooner had he deliberately begun to state his objections, than Mrs. Norris interrupted him with a reply to them all, whether stated or not.

"My dear Sir Thomas, I perfectly comprehend you, and do justice to the generosity and delicacy of your notions, which indeed are quite of a piece with your general conduct; and I entirely agree with you in the main as to the propriety of doing everything one could by way of providing for a child one had in a manner taken into one's own hands; and I am sure I should be the last person in the world to withhold my mite upon such an occasion. Having no children of my own, who should I look to in any little matter I may ever have to bestow, but the children of my sisters? — and I am sure Mr. Norris is too just — but you know I am a woman of few words and professions. Do not let us be frightened from a good deed by a trifle. Give a girl an education, and introduce her properly into the world, and ten to one but she has the means of settling well, without farther expense to anybody. A niece of ours, Sir Thomas, I may say, or at least of yours, would not grow up in this neighbourhood without many advantages. I don't say she would be so handsome as her cousins. I dare say she would not; but she would be introduced into the society of this country under such very favourable circumstances as, in all human probability, would get her a creditable establishment. You are thinking of your sons — but do not you know that, of all things upon earth, that is the least likely to happen, brought up as they would be, always together like brothers and sisters? It is morally impossible. I never knew an instance of it. It is, in fact, the only sure way of providing against the connexion. Suppose her a pretty girl, and seen by Tom or Edmund for the first time seven years hence, and I dare say there would be mischief. The very idea of her having been suffered to grow up at a distance from us all in poverty and neglect, would be enough to make either of the dear, sweet-tempered boys in love with her. But breed her up with them from this time, and suppose her even to have the beauty of an angel, and she will never be more to either than a sister."

"There is a great deal of truth in what you say," replied Sir Thomas, "and far be it from me to throw any fanciful impediment in the way of a plan which would be so consistent with the relative situations of each. I only meant to observe that it ought not to be lightly engaged in, and that to make it really serviceable to Mrs. Price, and creditable to ourselves, we must secure to the child, or consider ourselves engaged to secure to her hereafter, as circumstances may arise, the provision of a gentlewoman, if no such establishment should offer as you are so sanguine in expecting."

"I thoroughly understand you," cried Mrs. Norris, "you are everything that is generous and considerate, and I am sure we shall never disagree on this point. Whatever I can do, as you well know, I am always ready enough to do for the good of those I love; and, though I could never feel for this little girl the hundredth part of the regard I bear your own dear children, nor consider her, in any respect, so much my own, I should hate myself if I were capable of neglecting her. Is not she a sister's child? and could I bear to see her want while I had a bit of bread to give her? My dear Sir Thomas, with all my faults I have a warm heart; and, poor as I am, would rather deny myself the necessaries of life than do an ungenerous thing. So, if you are not against it, I will write to my poor sister tomorrow, and make the proposal; and, as soon as matters are settled, I will engage to get the child to Mansfield; you shall have no trouble about it. My own trouble, you know, I never regard. I will send Nanny to London on purpose, and she may have a bed at her cousin the saddler's, and the child be appointed to meet her there. They may easily get her from Portsmouth to town by the coach, under the care of any creditable person that may chance to be going. I dare say there is always some reputable tradesman's wife or other going up."

Except to the attack on Nanny's cousin, Sir Thomas no longer made any objection, and a more respectable, though less economical rendezvous being accordingly substituted, everything was considered as settled, and the pleasures of so benevolent a scheme were already enjoyed. The division of gratifying sensations ought not, in strict justice, to have been equal; for Sir Thomas was fully resolved to be the real and consistent patron of the selected child, and Mrs. Norris had not the least intention of being at any expense whatever in her maintenance. As far as walking, talking, and contriving reached, she was thoroughly benevolent, and nobody knew better how to dictate liberality to others; but her love of money was equal to her love of directing, and she knew quite as well how to save her own as to spend that of her friends. Having married on a narrower income than she had been used to look forward to, she had, from the first, fancied a very strict line of economy necessary; and what was begun as a matter of prudence, soon grew into a matter of choice, as an object of that needful solicitude which there were no children to supply. Had there been a family to provide for, Mrs. Norris might never have saved her money; but having no care of that kind, there was nothing to impede her frugality, or lessen the comfort of making a yearly addition to an income which they had never lived up to. Under this infatuating principle, counteracted by no real affection for her sister, it was impossible for her to aim at more than the credit of projecting and arranging so expensive a charity; though perhaps she might so little know herself as to walk home to the Parsonage, after this conversation, in the happy belief of being the most liberal- minded sister and aunt in the world.

When the subject was brought forward again, her views were more fully explained; and, in reply to Lady Bertram's calm inquiry of "Where shall the child come to first, sister, to you or to us?" Sir Thomas heard with some surprise that it would be totally out of Mrs. Norris's power to take any share in the personal charge of her. He had been considering her as a particularly welcome addition at the Parsonage, as a desirable companion to an aunt who had no children of her own; but he found himself wholly mistaken. Mrs. Norris was sorry to say that the little girl's staying with them, at least as things then were, was quite out of the question. Poor Mr. Norris's indifferent state of health made it an impossibility: he could no more bear the noise of a child than he could fly; if, indeed, he should ever get well of his gouty complaints, it would be a different matter: she should then be glad to take her turn, and think nothing of the inconvenience; but just now, poor Mr. Norris took up every moment of her time, and the very mention of such a thing she was sure would distract him.

"Then she had better come to us," said Lady Bertram, with the utmost composure. After a short pause Sir Thomas added with dignity, "Yes, let her home be in this house. We will endeavour to do our duty by her, and she will, at least, have the advantage of companions of her own age, and of a regular instructress."

"Very true," cried Mrs. Norris, "which are both very important considerations; and it will be just the same to Miss Lee whether she has three girls to teach, or only two — there can be no difference. I only wish I could be more useful; but you see I do all in my power. I am not one of those that spare their own trouble; and Nanny shall fetch her, however it may put me to inconvenience to have my chief counsellor away for three days. I suppose, sister, you will put the child in the little white attic, near the old nurseries. It will be much the best place for her, so near Miss Lee, and not far from the girls, and close by the housemaids, who could either of them help to dress her, you know, and take care of her clothes, for I suppose you would not think it fair to expect Ellis to wait on her as well as the others. Indeed, I do not see that you could possibly place her anywhere else."

Lady Bertram made no opposition.

"I hope she will prove a well-disposed girl," continued Mrs. Norris, "and be sensible of her uncommon good fortune in having such friends."

"Should her disposition be really bad," said Sir Thomas, "we must not, for our own children's sake, continue her in the family; but there is no reason to expect so great an evil. We shall probably see much to wish altered in her, and must prepare ourselves for gross ignorance, some meanness of opinions, and very distressing vulgarity of manner; but these are not incurable faults; nor, I trust, can they be dangerous for her associates. Had my daughters been younger than herself, I should have considered the introduction of such a companion as a matter of very serious moment; but, as it is, I hope there can be nothing to fear for them, and everything to hope for her, from the association."

"That is exactly what I think," cried Mrs. Norris, "and what I was saying to my husband this morning. It will be an education for the child, said I, only being with her cousins; if Miss Lee taught her nothing, she would learn to be good and clever from them."

"I hope she will not tease my poor pug," said Lady Bertram; "I have but just got Julia to leave it alone."

"There will be some difficulty in our way, Mrs. Norris," observed Sir Thomas, "as to the distinction proper to be made between the girls as they grow up: how to preserve in the minds of my daughters the consciousness of what they are, without making them think too lowly of their cousin; and how, without depressing her spirits too far, to make her remember that she is not a Miss Bertram. I should wish to see them very good friends, and would, on no account, authorise in my girls the smallest degree of arrogance towards their relation; but still they cannot be equals. Their rank, fortune, rights, and expectations will always be different. It is a point of great delicacy, and you must assist us in our endeavours to choose exactly the right line of conduct."

Mrs. Norris was quite at his service; and though she perfectly agreed with him as to its being a most difficult thing, encouraged him to hope that between them it would be easily managed.

It will be readily believed that Mrs. Norris did not write to her sister in vain. Mrs. Price seemed rather surprised that a girl should be fixed on, when she had so many fine boys, but accepted the offer most thankfully, assuring them of her daughter's being a very well- disposed, good-humoured girl, and trusting they would never have cause to throw her off. She spoke of her farther as somewhat delicate and puny, but was sanguine in the hope of her being materially better for change of air. Poor woman! she probably thought change of air might agree with many of her children.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Mansfield Park by Jane Austen. Copyright © 2016 Jane Austen. Excerpted by permission of OPEN ROAD INTEGRATED MEDIA.
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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
Introduction
Jane Austen: A Brief Chronology
A Note on the Text

Mansfield Park

Appendix A: The Theatricals at Mansfield Park

  1. August von Kotzebue, from Lovers’ Vows
  2. Austen family correspondence, from The Austen Papers
  3. Erasmus Darwin, from A Plan for the Conduct of Female Education in Boarding Schools
  4. Thomas Gisborne, from “On Amusements in General”

Appendix B: Religion

  1. Jane Austen’s prayers, from The Works of Jane Austen
  2. Hannah More, Strictures on the Modern System of Female Education
  3. William Wilberforce, from A Practical View of the Prevailing Religious System of Professed Christians
  4. Dr. John Gregory, from “Religion”

Appendix C: Ideals of Femininity

  1. Henry Austen, from “Biographical Notice” of Jane Austen
  2. Thomas Gisborne, from “On the Importance of the Female Character”
  3. Dr. John Gregory, from “Conduct and Behaviour”
  4. Hannah More, from “The Benefits of Restraint”

Appendix D: “The Improvement of the Estate”

  1. William Cowper, from The Garden
  2. Humphry Repton, from Observations on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening

Appendix E: The West Indian Connection

  1. A Permanent and Effectual Remedy Suggested for the Evils Under Which the British West Indies Now Labour
  2. Joseph Lowe, from An Inquiry into the State of the British West Indies
  3. Excerpt from Frank Austen’s notebook 1808, from Jane Austen’s Sailor Brothers
  4. Thomas Clarkson, from The History of the Rise, Progress, and Accomplishment of the Abolition of the African Slave-Trade
  5. Hannah More, “The Sorrows of Yamba or the Negro Woman’s Lamentation”

Appendix F: Women’s Education

  1. Thomas Gisborne, from “On Female Education”
  2. Thomas Gisborne, from “On Parental Duties”
  3. Hannah More, from “Comparison of the Mode of Female Education in the Last Age With That of the Present Age”
  4. Maria Edgeworth and Richard Lovell Edgeworth, from “Prudence and Economy”
  5. Mary Wollstonecraft, from “Introduction” to A Vindication of the Rights of Woman

Appendix G: Contemporary Reception of Mansfield Park

  1. Richard Whateley, from Quarterly Review, January 1821
  2. Excerpt from “Opinions of Mansfield Park: collected and transcribed by Jane Austen”
  3. Excerpt from “Opinions of Emma: collected and transcribed by Jane Austen”

Appendix H: Jane Austen’s Letters and Mansfield Park

  1. Letter from JA to Cassandra Austen. January 1813
  2. Letter from JA to Francis Austen. July 1813
  3. Letter from JA to Francis Austen. September 1813

Works Cited and Recommended Reading

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From the Publisher

"McCaddon is the ideal choice to present this classic...a nineteenth-century 'tell all' just as impossible to resist as the tabloids in the check-out line." —-AudioFile

EBOOK COMMENTARY

"The technique of the novel is beyond praise, and has been praised. The master of the art she choose, or that choose her, is complete: How she achieved it no one will ever know."

Reading Group Guide

1. Though it was very successful, Jane Austen deemed Pride and Prejudice, her second novel, 'rather too light.' As Carol Shields mentions in her Introduction, Austen hoped to address more serious issues in her next novel, Mansfield Park. Many readers and critics think Mansfield Park is Austen's most serious and most profound novel. How does it differ from Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice? How are her treatments of class, gender, relationships, and most especially, faith, more nuanced and more mature?

2. Describe the social positions of the three Ward sisters Lady Bertram, Mrs. Norris, and Mrs. Price. How did they arrive at such different circumstances and how have their circumstances presumably affected their personalities? How do the sisters treat each other and how much of this is the result of their respective status?

3. As soon as Sir Thomas decides to accept responsibility for one of Mrs. Price's children, Fanny is put into an unusual position. Sir Bertram says, although she is to live with them, 'she is not a Miss Bertram . . . their rank, fortune, rights and expectations will always be different.' Describe the family's feelings for Fanny as the novel develops. How does the treatment of Fanny by Mrs. Norris and the Bertram sisters distinguish her from the rest of the children? How does Fanny feel about the Bertrams and how do her feelings change, especially for Sir Bertram and Edmund? Before her marriage, what changes take place that allow for her acceptance in the family?

4. Fanny Price inspires strong reactions in readers; she is cast by some as a dreary killjoy, and by others as an endearing, admirable heroine. Is this dichotomy Austen'sintention? Discuss the ways in which Fanny embodies both sides of this polarized debate. What is your opinion of her in relation to other well-known female protagonists of the day?

5. Mansfield Park was divided into three volumes, published separately. Why do you think Austen chose this structure, and how does it affect your reading of the book? Think about other writing that employs this structure to inform your response.

6. From the moment the idea is suggested, Edmund is against the staging of a play. Why is the play seen as inappropriate by both Edmund and Fanny? Why, once it is decided upon, does Edmund accept a part in the play, even though he would appear a hypocrite? How much of this license was taken because of the absence of Sir Thomas and how much was simply the influence of Tom? What is the significance of their choice of plays, Lover's Vows?

7. Describe the similarities and differences between the courtship of Edmund and Mary and that of Fanny and Henry. What are the stumbling blocks in these two courtships that cause them to fail? To what extent were the trials of these courtships responsible for Edmund's change of heart toward Fanny?


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Mansfield Park 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 535 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ever since I read Pride and Prejudice, I've been completely hooked on to Jane Austen! This is the second novel of hers I read, and I have to say, I liked it even more than Pride and Prejudice (which was awesome!). Fanny's sweet character and manners touched me, and to meet all of the characters and travel along with them in time is a very touching experience, which makes you miss them when you've finished the book, as if you'd let go of old friends. I recommend this book to anyone who likes Jane Austen, or who wants a comfy read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Austen's novels really warm my heart. I fall in love with them as soon as i see them and Mansfield Park has totally made think different about life and how people act, which is what her novels are based on. I highly reccomend it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
What more can be said? Either you like her work or you don't. It doesn't rate in my top 5, but it's still a good piece of literary work.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Of the four Austen novels I have read (the others being Emma, Pride and Prejudice, and Sense and Sensibility), Mansfield Park was my favorite. Why? To be frank, though I love Austen's work and would never want to speak badly of it, the heroines in none of her other novels appeals to me as much as Fanny. Emma is too obviously obsessed with social class, and Eliza's apparent high opinion of herself and her abilities annoys me. Fanny is the only heroine who actually sticks to her beliefs. As always, I recommend the movie, but not after you've read the book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have read many works by Austen, and Mansfield Park is definetely the best, but sadly not her most popular work. Unlike Pride and Prejudice and its fairy tale story, Mansfield Park explores the deep emotions of human beings. From this book, Austen tries to show that anyone can be both good and bad, like Henry Crawford, whom I both hated and felt sympathy for. I don't understand why some say that the ending is bad, because without its surprising ending, Mansfield Park wouldn't be the profound novel that it is.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Barnes & Noble Classics Series edition is well worth the nominal cost. It is nicely formatted for the Nook and has good end- and footnotes. The introduction is a "spoiler," if you haven't read Mannsfield Park before, but it is well done and can be read after-the-fact for an excellent treatment of Austen's work.
leuanne More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. The only thing about it that I didn't like was that I felt Edward always loved Fanny, he was just blind sided by another woman. I hate that Fanny had to know she was second best to him.
Orla More than 1 year ago
Mansfield Park was so good. The story was captivating to where I could see Mansfield Park and it's surrounding landscape. I could even feel each emotion that the characters felt. Jane Austen has yet to disappoint me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
easily overlooked Austen novel, but that's the point about the heroine. She is overlooked by everyone, even many readers. But its a sweet, wonderful, clever novel
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One word. AMAZING!
Elinor_D_Ferrars More than 1 year ago
Manfield Park differs from Jane Austen's other novels, in that the main protagonist Fanny Price is a meek, fragile little creature, who lives at the mercy of her domineering wealthy relatives. The novel still contains the satirical wit characteristic of Austen, though it does not come from the heroine. Throughout the story, the reader's sympathy is often incited by the ill treatment of Fanny by her superiors, her inferiority complex, and her unrequited love for her kindly cousin Edmund Bertram (The reader will please keep in mind that loving one's cousin was perfectly acceptable at that time).
Book_lover18 More than 1 year ago
Once again Jane Austen succeeded in producing a good novel filled with observations on human interaction with one another and love during her time. This is a really good classic to read. Normally before reading a book, I first become really acquainted with the plot but I decided to get out of my comfort zone and only read the back of the book (which after having finished the book today) it was just the right amount of information that I needed to understand the story of the book. Here in Mansfield Park, Austen depicts the social standards that lie in the pursuit of love and money. As with all of Austen's books the ending is a happy one for the main character!!
BookLoverSH More than 1 year ago
I LOVE Jane so this was not disappointing! There was a good twist at the end and I love reading about 19th century conventions and society. A great book to curl up on the couch with!
Vovo More than 1 year ago
I greatly anticipated reading Mansfield Park as it was the only book by Jane Austen which I had yet to read. Also, my interest had been piqued by all of the opinions that Fanny Price was boring, the book was boring, and Edmund was a twit of the highest order. After reading the novel for myself, I can now say that Fanny Price is my favorite character written by Jane Austen, the book was highly entertaining, and Edmund was a sweetheart, albeit a slightly confused sweetheart! Whenever I have read Pride and Prejudice-which I have read it many times- I always became angry with Elizabeth Bennet for her somewhat obnoxious way of accusing Mr. Darcy unjustly. I became embarrassed for her lack of composure, always preferring Jane Bennet. I entertained the same sentiments for Cathy in Northanger Abbey. However, in Mansfield Park, I was charmed by Fanny for her ladylike poise under the verbal darts of her Aunt Norris, for her consistency of character. The book was, in most ways, my personal idea of perfection. My only question was this: How could she resist Henry Crawford???
Hill_Ravens More than 1 year ago
I have read many Austen books and while they are always a little slow to get going, they have always turned out worth the time, until now. The overall theme of the book is typical for the author, the writing itself is fabulous, but I could care less about every character in the book. Not one of them was appealing on any level, not even the bad guys. I would strongly recommend any other Austen book to a friend and urge anyone away from this one. I know it is the era of the writing but two close cousins (share sisters for mom's) marry in the book is way wrong. Maybe that is why the whole book sucked for me, when the girl falls in love with her cousin at the start, and the entire book is centered on her love for him, it gets old quick. Maybe in a few years I will read again and pretend they are not related at all and see if it improves the story.
Kiko1021 More than 1 year ago
I found the beginning of this book to be extremely slow, but the book did pick up in the end. I liked Fanny alot, but she does need more self-confidence. Edmund is too good to be true. I dragged through this book until it picked up at the end. I was sad to see it end, and I think Austen could have devoted more than 2 pages to Fanny and Edmund's romance at the end because it took so long to happen. But, overall, it's a great read. Don't expect it be a fast read!
h_Love More than 1 year ago
I bought the Jane Austen collection of novels and this gem was in there. I loved it from begining to end. Don't watch the movie it's horrible. They change Fanny into something she's not. The novel is a must read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read all Jane Austens novels, and this was my least favorite. It wssn't bad, but not good.
_Lover-of-books_ More than 1 year ago
Jane Austen has created another masterpiece. I fell in love with this book too. Fanny really captures your attention with her kind and loving personality. Austen really knows how to make you believe her characters are real people. This is a really touching story of two young people looking for love, and finally able to find a happy life in each other. A must read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first read Pride and Prejudice, and found myself falling in love with Jane Austen's novels. Then I read Mansfield Park. Some people say that Fanny is dull and boring. Some even say that no person can have the same personality, but I found myself loving her for she is like me, and I disagree with any person who doesn't like her. She is so simple, but so profound! And the plot, well, it's just exceptionable! The novel was great, and I'm also very pleased with the new movie version of Mansfield Park, who's actors and actresses couldn't do a better job with one of Jane Austen's finest novels.
Anonymous 4 months ago
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Anonymous 11 months ago
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Smiler69 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Some years ago I would not have been caught dead reading any of Jane Austen's novels, and watching the movies just made me cringe. It just all seemed much too quaint for my cynical self. But now that I've considerably mellowed out with middle age (and lots of meds!) I decided to approach her with an open mind. So far, I've only read Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice and Mansfield Park, the latter of which is definitely my favourite so far. I know this novel isn't that popular among JA fans, most finding Fanny Price to be too much of a wallflower for a lead character. To me it seemed like she was on the contrary a young woman of conviction with a strong moral fiber who seemed to have more depth than the leading young women in the other two novels, which I found too frothy for my liking. The secondary characters were very entertaining. Indeed, their presence was essential in moving the story forward and providing plenty of spice and drama. Overall, it felt to me like this novel had more depth, though I know that's probably highly debatable. I listened to the audio version narrated by Juliet Stevenson, who is one of my favourite narrators and who could not do otherwise than greatly increase my appreciation for Jane Austen.
SheReadsNovels on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I first read this book when I was 14 - it was the second Jane Austen book I read after Pride and Prejudice, which I loved. However, I found Mansfield Park dull and lacking the humour of Pride and Prejudice, and I didn't manage to finish it.I have read it again recently and this time I found that I enjoyed it. It's true that Fanny Price is not very interesting as a main character, but the book is still worth reading, particularly if you're a fan of Austen's other works.
SimoneA on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is probably my least favorite Jane Austen I have read so far. That is mainly because the main character is not a very sympathetic girl, who needs a good kick in the butt and a dose of self confidence. Actually, there are very little 'good' people in the book. However, I will not call this a bad book, because the characters are funny and well described; I can easily imagine them all. Overall, I enjoyed reading the book, and will probably read it again.