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Northanger Abbey Read-Along Chapters 25-31



So a lot happened in these chapters! Like, wow. Whereas the last set of chapters kind of lagged until the last couple of days, these really moved along. I was really taken by surprise as I read through some of the changes that were taking place within these chapters. And I have to admit, even though sometimes Catherine seems a bit over dramatic, my heart went out to her in this week. I probably would have reacted similarly if I had been in that situation. I found myself very curious as to have everything would be solved and read both chapters 30 and 31 last just to see what happened. And I must admit, I'm quite pleased with the results.

I can't believe it's the last week! Where has the time gone? Listed below are my answers to the final discussion questions, which were written by Amber.

1. How would you respond to General Tilney's rudeness if you were: Catherine? Eleanor? Catherine's parents?

Catherine: I would be so crushed! And I would feel a bit side swept, too. But then again, I would probably blame myself, too, fearing that I was being punished for suspecting him of unsavory plans earlier in the book. It would be a mixture of miserable feelings, for sure!

Eleanor: I would be almost as crushed as if I were Catherine. They seemed to become good friends, and I would hate to see one of my good friends turned away from my home.

Catherine's parents: I would be furious! I don't have kids of my own, but I'm pretty protective of the family I do have and it would make me so angry to hear of someone putting them down so.

2. How do you feel about Henry Tilney by the end of the story? What do you think of his home in Woodston, his response to his father's actions toward Catherine, and his initial reasons for pursuing her?

I came to love Henry Tilney. True, I think he sometimes takes his teasing a little too far, but I like that he isn't a dry reverend and I love that he pursued Catherine despite his father's interference. I admire how close he is with his family and I love that he enjoys reading! I think his home at Woodston sounds rather cozy and homey as opposed to cold and rambling Northanger Abbey. I think Catherine would feel much more at home at Woodston.

3. The final line of the book states, "I leave it to be settled by whomsoever it may concern, whether the tendency of this work be altogether to recommend parental tyranny, or reward filial disobedience." What is your verdict? Do you believe the story recommends parental tyranny or a child's disobedience? What do you believe is the book's real message?

I don't really feel that it recommends either. I feel like this is a story of a love that survived great tests. Catherine and Henry's relationship was thwarted at every turn, it seemed, first by the Thorpes and then by General Tilney. But "what God hath joined together, let no man put asunder." ;-) It just goes to show that if a couple are meant to be, then nothing can tear them apart.

And so now I bid adieu to the Northanger Abbey read-along of 2016. It's been great fun! I've enjoyed becoming better acquainted with this work of the lovely Ms. Jane Austen and have loved talking with fellow readers this month. I can't wait to do another read-along!


-Miranda Atchley

4 comments

  1. I'm sad that the read-along is over :( I've enjoyed your posts and look forward to keeping up with your blog posts. Holy cow a lot did happen in these last chapters! I too read chapters 30 and 31 in one sitting just to see how it all ended. I definitely agree that Catherine will feel much more at home at Woodston. I said homey and cozy as well :) (great minds?). I was totally ticked off at The General for his behavior towards Catherine! Inexcusable for sure! I was probably an overprotective parent and I can tell you I would have probably gone and given the guy a piece of my mind. But in those days I guess a horse and carriage ride wasn't quite as convenient as picking up the phone or even driving on over to someone's house to give them a piece of my mind. ha! It's been fun Miranda! I'll be looking forward to the next read-along :)

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    1. I'm sad, too. But I so look forward to another read-along! It's been great reading your posts, too, and I look forward to keeping up with your blog! Great minds do think alike! And the general? Ugh! But I'm really happy that Henry stood up for himself and pursued Catherine anyway.

      Thank you for reading my blog this month, Julie! I really appreciate it and look forward to many more read-alongs in the future! :)

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  2. Aw, such great thoughts on the last part of the book, Miranda!

    Wouldn't that be so hard to be in Eleanor's position? To be stuck between a rock and a hard place, and to see your friend be treated like that by your own father. :(

    Yes, there is so much to love about Tilney and the kind of life he can give Catherine! Woodston does sound darling, and I, too, love that Tilney breaks the "dry reverend" stereotype. :) I wonder how much of Tilney's character was inspired by Jane's family? I believe her father and one (?) of her brothers were reverends...? (I should brush up on my Austen-family knowledge! ;))

    And your thoughts on the main point of the story are lovely! Henry and Catherine did have to overcome a lot to finally find their happy ending. But yay for love that's meant to be! :)

    So fun to chat about this book with you! Thank you for participating in the read-along and putting together such thoughtful posts!

    ~Amber

    P.S. I love the point Julie made about it being hard for someone to just hop into a carriage and get after someone for their rude behavior in those days, haha. ;)

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    1. It would be terribly to be Eleanor! I'd just as soon not have to wonder about it. I think somewhere I read that Jane Austen based a lot of Tilney on one of her brothers. I could be wrong, but I think that's what I read.

      Haha! Yeah, I can totally see where Julie was coming from; can you imagine trying to prepare a carriage to go out and run every little errand, the way we're able to these days?

      Thank you for hosting this lovely read-along, Amber! I had a lot of fun, and am really looking forward to the next read-along!

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