Book Title - Emma
Author - Jane Austen
Um...Jane who? - Jane Austen is one of England's most notable authors since well, ever really. She was born in Steventon, Hampshire on December 16th 1775 and she was the seventh child out of eight children. Jane wrote 6 novels and despite giving us all some of the most iconic and wonderfully romantic love stories (Not that all her books were of the romcom nature) in the history of literature, Jane remained unmarried although I like to think that she did find her own Mr Knightly along the way....
So what is Emma all about? - Emma was the 4th novel that Jane wrote and it was released in 1815. Before publication Jane said of the lead character in the yet to be released book "I am going to take a heroine whom no-one but myself will much like". Emma has always been an opinion splitting character in classic fiction and its seems like Jane had intended her to be so from the very start. The story is about a 20 year old wealthy young girl called (you, you guessed it ) Emma. Emma believes that she is extremely gifted at matchmaking and takes it upon herself to try and create love for all those around her, even the ones who aren't looking for it. She unfortunately gets some signals mixed up and miss matches her friend and all chaos ensues. Whilst that is the main plotline of the book the story itself is more about Emma learning about herself, growing up and ultimately falling in love.
My thoughts on the book - My name is Emma so all my life I feel like I've had a connection to the book. When I was little I by passed the cartoons and went straight to the movies. My two favourites that I had on a loop (My mum said it got to the point where she had to actually hide the VHS tapes of them as she said I would get to the end, press rewind and play them from the beginning again) were Grease and Clueless, still to this day two of my favourites ever. It wasn't until I grew up and got the connection between clueless and Emma (more on that down below) and it all sort of became even more connected for me. So when I finally read the book a good handful of years ago now I must admit I was a little um...underwhelmed. Not because I didn't love the story because its actually one of my favourite stories in the whole world, I feel like it has single handled inspired most of my favourite books, TV shows and films but it was more the actual writing that bothered me. I have to just put my hands up and say that reading this type of writing style just doesn't come natural to me. It feels very structured and I feel like I'm always constantly thinking when I'm reading it and double checking that I'm understanding what has just been wrote. One of my favourite things about reading has always been how much a good story can capture me and make me feel like I'm actually there in the story which is why I think a lot of people love to read so much too and unfortunately I just don't get this feeling reading Austen.
I know a lot of you will be screaming at the screen like, no your wrong and I know that her writing style is a favourite amongst so many and its not that I don't appreciate it and love so many aspects of it, its just that I don't find that I can escape into. Saying that though I just love, love, love this story so much that even though I sort of have to work at getting through the book I find her words just so beautiful that it more than makes up for all the negatives I feel about her style of writing. I wish so much that it came easy to me or that I enjoyed reading this style of writing, you know 'The Classics' but I just don't. I feel like I'm missing out on so many wonderful stories though and that is why I have made it my aim to work my way through the ones that have caught my eye and that means definitely a few more Jane Austen titles.
I have to say how much I love the character of Emma though, I know some people see her differently but I just think her whole character arc is wonderful and she has such a kind heart and I couldn't be happier to be named after someone as special as she is.
Wait, when was this on Gilmore Girls - In episode 8 of Season One, which is called Love, War and Snow, Dean gives Rory back a copy of Emma by Jane Austen and admits that he enjoyed it even though he thought he wouldn't. So if it's good enough for Dean....
Can I skip the book and watch the movie? - You are actually spoiled for choice when it comes to Emma adaptions. Between the years of 1948 and 2009 the book has been made into 6 different versions for TV and film. For film, you've got the Gwyneth Paltrow led movie, I haven't ever seen this as I refuse to watch anything Gwennie related as she just ain't my thang so I can't recommend it but for TV you've got the mini series staring Kate Beckinsale which I found pretty dull but the one that I loved so much and have actually seen a few times is the 2009 adaption for the BBC staring Romola Garai and Jonny Lee Miller. I'm pretty sure this version is on Netflix and I can't recommend it enough. There are 6 episodes I think and I just think Romola's version of Emma is perfection, its exactly how I imagined her to be and act and I think Mr Miller is the most wonderful Mr Knightley. Go watch it if you haven't, I think you will really love it!
Also the aforementioned Clueless, this movie is loosely based on Emma and once you read Emma after watching it you'll be like oh my, that's Cher! I think its the most perfect adaption of the book and it makes it so relevant and current which is good if you don't like watching a period piece but want to get to grips with the story.
Favourite Quote - “If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more.”
Some Book Club questions-
What are your thoughts on the character of Emma?
Would you read it again?
Who would you choose to play Emma in a modern day adaption?
I really hope you like my review of Emma. It's such a special book to me and my aim is to one day have every different covered copy of it and to read it enough times that the writing style becomes second nature to me. I love the story so much and even though I'm not the biggest fan of the typical classic writing style, the story of Emma and her trials and tribulations always win me over in the end. I am actually thinking of listening to the audio book of Emma too as I think that would let me enjoy the wonderful story without having to wade through the style of words. I can't wait to hear what you think of the book, please do let me know in the comments as always and on twitter and instagram using the hashtag #GilmoreGirlsBookClub
Read about Book Number One - Franny and Zooey
Read about Book Number Two - Edgar Allan Poe
Read all about my Gilmore Girls Book Club, what it's all about and what books are coming up next HERE
Buy Emma on wordery and get free delivery on your whole order or you can get it for 49p right now on your kindle from Amazon
Follow me on Twitter
Follow me on Instagram