[review] Evelina by Frances Burney

Evelina Anville has been raised an orphan, but she does not begrudge her situation. Pretty, kind, and intelligent if somewhat naive, her entrance into the world allows a fairly modern (and certainly humorous) look on eighteenth-century English society.

Time to read: about 3 weeks because of exams, though I read most of it right before having to write an essay on it…

For an  eighteenth-century novel, Evelina is a surprisingly easy and accessible read. Evelina reminds me of myself when I was in my mid-teens, and her sweet-natured commentary on the going-ons around her are funnier than I was expecting. The characters are a strange mix of one-dimensional and two-dimensional, and the dialogue is full of irony.

Then there’s Lord Orville. Oh, Lord Orville. He gives Darcy a run for his money on the swoon-worthy scale! Watching Evelina’s feelings for Lord Orville grow through tiny hints is adorable and grin-making. There were times I was legitimately glued to the book, generally whenever Lord Orville appeared.

Of course, it is still an eighteenth-century novel. It can be slow at times, and if you’re looking for anything super passionate you’re going to have to look somewhere else.

Novels with similar aspects

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Clarissa by Samuel Richardson

Roxana by Daniel Defoe

Recommended to those who enjoy the classics. Austen fans will especially enjoy it.

Not recommended to those looking for a quick paced or light read.

I’m not expecting many to have read this one, so I don’t see a point in having a discussion post, but if I’m wrong let me know in the comments and I’ll put one up tomorrow.

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About megtao

Student. Writer. Nerdfighter. Fights for love, justice, and awesome.
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One Response to [review] Evelina by Frances Burney

  1. Samantha says:

    Oh, I’m so glad you’ve put this review up Meg. I’ve been tossing up about this book, whether to put it on my TBR pile (well, it would have hit it eventually, but you know…). It’s definitely going to get put on and moved up the list 😀

    Just need to grab myself a copy of it first, hee. 😀

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