Friday, December 27, 2013

Classics Club Review: Northanger Abbey by Austen, Butler, Lee & Filardi



This is the third Austen adaptation that Nancy Butler has written for Marvel and it is my favorite. Northanger Abbey is the only Austen novel I haven’t read yet. As I’m writing this I’m about to correct that by reading Northanger with an online book club at Unputdownables.

I didn't really enjoy the Pride & Prejudice adaptation by Butler & Lee but I loved every page of this one. Catherine is an Austen lady that Janeites  can really connect with. She lives vicariously through novels, the more gothic the better.  Once Catherine is thrust upon her first taste of society as a companion to the Allen's in Bath, she expects life to imitate art.

Catherine has the breeding and the looks of a typical Lady but she, more than any other Austen woman is trapped by the restrictions of society. Her first few days in public with Mrs. Allen are non-eventful because they haven't officially  been introduced to anyone. That soon changes when the event host introduces them to Mr.Tinley. Charles and his sister Eleanor make an immediate positive impression on Catherine. She is excited to make their further acquaintance. However Catherine’s plans are led awry by John and Isabella Thorpe. Isabella knows Catherine's brother James and so she is drawn into the siblings party quite against her will.

There are almost comedic Cat & Mouse type antics in the story where Catherine tries vainly to spend time with those she is growing closer too vs. those  who are manipulating her kind, naive nature to their advantage.
One bright spot appears when Mr. Tinley’s father invites Catherine to visit Northanger Abbey for an extended stay. It is at Northanger that Catherine sees the fulfillment of all her naive fantasies along  with a hard wakeup call to what her standing in life may and may not entitle her to.

This is a lovely book. The art is the star and Lee along with the colorist team being this novel lovingly to life. A wonderful read for Austen fans.

1 comment:

Pamela D said...

This book sounds right up my alley. Thanks for the review.