Jane Austen is an author I didn't expect to enjoy, however, I have been proved wrong. Northanger Abbey was an enjoyable book that I, at times, didn't want to put down. The characters were amusing and somewhat overdone, in a good way, as I think only Jane Austen can pull off, and the language was very elegant and enjoyable, if not a bit of a challenge.
Catherine Morland, our "heroine", in an idealistic young woman whose very nature demands she always see the best in people. She also has an over active imagination, encouraged by the reading of Gothic novels, that tends to get the best of her. When Mr. and Mrs. Allen invite Miss. Morland to join them on a trip to Bath, she is given a harsh lesson in the realities of life. While enjoying society she is quickly introduced to new friends, Mr. John Thorpe and Miss. Isabella Thorpe, an avaricious brother and sister hoping an acquaintance with Miss. Morland will be advantageous. She is also introduced to the witty Mr. Henery Tilney, who lives, with his sister and father, at Northanger Abbey, which Catherine imagines to be much like the abbey's in her Gothic stories. She is soon entreated to accompany them home, and it isn't long before the most prosaic events get the best of her imagination and Henery is forced to explain the truth of his mother's death, and help her learn that things aren't always as they seem.
I have been told that Northanger Abbey is not Ms. Austen's best tale, but it was a good place to start, and I look forward to soon reading her most popular novel Pride and Prejudice.