I’ve been trying to get back into reading again recently and I’ve read two books that I fell in love with. One is a classic that I’m sure many people have already read, the other was published in 2001 and has been acclaimed by many. Both of these books have great film adaptations (oddly both star Keira Knightley) which I had seen prior to reading the books, but as is the case with most books they provided so much more depth and an overall greater, more complete story. I’m not going to give away any spoilers of the plots, so don’t be afraid to read on.
Pride and Prejudice: Jane Austen – I think a lot of people are put off reading Jane Austen because they’re intimidated by it alongside many other authors including Charlotte Brontë and Charles Dickens. The plot can be a bit difficult to follow at times, but I think having watched the film adaptation (and the BBC series) first made it easier to follow. This book was written at a time when women were far from equal in society and Jane Austen’s ‘tell it like it is’ attitude paints this all too clearly. One of my favourite things about the novel aside from the love story? The humour. A lot of people might assume that the book is devoid of any sentiment of comedic value, but it is there if you just dig a little deeper. Plus, when reading it I can’t help but visualise Mr Darcy as Colin Firth and that can’t be a bad thing, can it?
Atonement: Ian McEwan – This is one of the greatest films I have ever seen and it’s pretty dire that it has taken me this long to read the book. This book makes you hate a character like you’ve never hated a fictitious being before, but as the novel progresses you will begin to have an understanding of why ‘the event’ happened. When you start to fall in love with other characters they are taken away from you and the ending is possibly the most unsatisfactory ending ever written. However, it is BRILLIANT. It’s a book that will make you smile and cry within the space of about five pages and I, myself know that I became emotionally over involved in the plot. A pretty strong indication you’ve read a great book. If you don’t like reading then 100% watch the film, you will not be disappointed *cough* James McAvoy.
Have you read either of these books? What are your favourite novels?