Pride and Prejudice – Book Review


By Shruti Vairagkar (L&T Howden)

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.

Jane Austen’s arguably most famous book Pride and Prejudice opens with this revealing but fairly true statement. Published in the early nineteenth century, it is the story of a young woman whose ideas and expectations from life and romance mature over the course of the book.

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Elizabeth Bennet along with her parents and four sisters lives in the English countryside. The otherwise quiet life is stirred with excitement when a young, wealthy gentleman leases accommodation near the village and brings with him his friend, Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy and his sisters. What ensues is a tale of romance, heartbreak, misunderstandings, hurt pride, prejudices, and a happily ever after, of course!

I could easily forgive his pride, if he had not mortified mine

The narration is filled with witty repartee, musings, and some laughable moments (A lady’s imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment). There are passages in the book which make you pause and think about life like,

Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.

There are certain statements which one couldn’t help but agree with in today’s day and age as well. Angry people are not always wise and we are all fools in love are two of the many such nuggets.

The book provides glimpses into the lives, social propriety, and laws that prevailed in that era. The theme of the story revolves around upbringing and environment; and importance of marriage for women and the lack of options after a certain age. It also highlights inheritance laws (how they favoured the male relatives over the women in the family), propriety, morality, and social status and wealth.

This much loved book has been adapted across various platforms – movies, TV miniseries, web series, and theatre. It has also inspired many indirect adaptations in literature.

If one can get over the ‘verbose’ style of writing, Pride and Prejudice is more than just a love story which gives an insight into life in the nineteenth century. If you are looking for something different, why not go old school this Valentine’s Day?

4 thoughts on “Pride and Prejudice – Book Review

  1. Shruti.. You just reminded me of my school days when I was so much in love with Mr. Darcy. In fact all my friends would look for a Mr. Darcy to be our Prince Charming. At a later stage when i re read it, it just brought out more clearly, the complexities in human behavior and how a woman thinks and how she may be misunderstood. A mixture of emotions was always felt while reading it… but somehow it would always leave me feeling happy!!! Nice review and I must go back and read again now to see if my thoughts have changed with time.

    1. I think every girl who has read this book falls in love with Mr Darcy! He is a bit of a snob though. 🙂
      Nevertheless, thank you for your kind words!

  2. This review is brilliant! It’s given me just enough an idea of the content to incite curiosity. Looking forward to read the book.

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