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Bronte or Austen ?

(65 Posts)
herethereeverywhere Tue 04-Dec-12 12:37:15

Just that really. Just had a debate with my sister regarding them both (all Brontes vs Jane Austen ). I said that although I do love P&P and Persuasion for me it's the Brontes every time. DSis thinks you can't beat Austen for escapism though. Apologies if this has been done on here before but DSis and I have decided to bow down to the mumsnet vote grin

WoTmania Wed 16-Jan-13 16:50:52

Hmmm, preferred Brontes when I was younger and hated Austen - re-read the Austen books in my twenties and really enjoy them (except Mansfield Park).
Depends on my mood and what I want to read at that particular moment.

Hoophopes Mon 14-Jan-13 23:39:58

Anne Bronte is my favourite of the Brontes.

KatyTheCleaningLady Sun 13-Jan-13 14:07:21

Totally Austen. She writes realistically, with humour. Bronte sisters (Anne excepted to some extent) write goofy romanticism full of hysteria and silliness.

And the "heros'" are invariably jerks. I mean, really.

SminkoPinko Sun 13-Jan-13 01:55:56

I think it is an error to lump the Brontes together. I love Charlotte Bronte- esp Jane Eyre and Villette. Two of my favourite books ever. Charlotte is the only great literary Bronte in my view. Emily was a precursor to Jilly Cooper but her characters are even less likable and Anne's work is just dull. Charlotte alone is worthy of comparison with the equally great though very different Jane Austen.

louisianablue2000 Sun 13-Jan-13 01:24:52

I like both, but I've probably reread Austen more. I like my nineteenth century female novelists though, I love Eliott and Gaskell as well. Just realised today I'm now older than Austen was when she died. That's a sobering thought!

mixedmamameansbusiness Sun 09-Dec-12 20:20:34

I would firstly like to say that this has been done before, but I am fairly certain that we never tire of this debate... It genuinely bought a smile to my face. Every single time I see my cousin we spend an inordinate amount of time discussing this very issue.

Now onto the subject at hand. For just a fluffy Sunday afternoon with. Box of chocolates it would be Austen all of the time, particularly Persuasion followed probably by arching every available adaptation.

I have only read Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre but Wuthering Heights rates as one of my all time favourite classics.

I think I haven't been able to actually decide.

notnowImreading Sat 08-Dec-12 11:48:27

Love all of Austen and only some Brontes, but there are times when only Jane Eyre will do. I don't like Wuthering Heights, though - much too much badness flying around there. My mum came up with an interesting interpretation a few days ago, saying that 'young women are terrifying' in Bronte novels and turn the world upside down for everyone. Hadn't thought of it that way before - always identified with the young women rather than stepping back and judging them a bit.

AphraBehn Fri 07-Dec-12 13:26:27

Austen for me.

I spent last weekend in Bath and was unfeasibly excited to go down the Gravel Walk.

I then went from the Pump Room, down Milsom Street to Edgar Buildings. All that was missing was a walk along Beechen Cliff and a pleasant young man to tell me about muslin.

<plans next trip >

snowtunesgirl Thu 06-Dec-12 14:30:49

Austen. Though I may be biased as I has Head Girl of Austen House in my secondary school. grin

I just find the Brontes so humourless. FGS, just get off that bloody moor etc, have a drink or a dance and lighten up!

bimblebee Thu 06-Dec-12 14:21:16

Brontes every time for me, but then again I like my fiction to be quite dark and gritty!

EugenesAxeChoppedDownANiceTree Thu 06-Dec-12 01:22:10

I read Sanditon - it was shit IMO. The other lady got far too obsessed with unreality... even more than Jane did, and it seemed the whole thing was entirely far fetched.

Grumpla Wed 05-Dec-12 23:50:00


<swirls cloak, stomps off onto moor>

ummlilia Wed 05-Dec-12 23:48:16

Brontes, definitely..they transport me back to my angst-ridden,northern , childhood..

TheOriginalSteamingNit Wed 05-Dec-12 21:34:22


GreenandwhitePenguin Wed 05-Dec-12 21:19:38

Anyone else read Sanditon by Jane Austen and 'another lady'? I think it is high time for a reread of that one. smile

1605 Wed 05-Dec-12 21:16:43

Persuasion makes me cry, every time. I re-read recently and the on-the-shelf heroine is, erm, 26 confused. Then again life expectancy for women was only 42 at the time.

Beamur Wed 05-Dec-12 21:12:14

Difficult to say - in some ways to go chronologically would make sense, but I would suggest you read Sense and Sensibility first or maybe Pride and Prejudice - but P&P is probably the best one, so I'd leave that for a bit later.
I've recently re-read them all and still love them.

MrsJohnDeere Wed 05-Dec-12 21:12:14

P&P or Emma or S&S

So hard to pick

StiffyByng Wed 05-Dec-12 21:12:06

Oh, Vanity Fair is superb.

MrsJohnDeere Wed 05-Dec-12 21:10:36


PretzelTime Wed 05-Dec-12 21:08:22

Hmmm maybe I should try Austen again since you all love her writing so much.

Which book would you recommend?

1605 Wed 05-Dec-12 21:04:15

Austen by a long mile.

If you think she's akin to chick-lit, you're misreading. They're funny, frightening and viciously observant.

Brontes. Angst. Boring. Also, the heroes are so misogynistic. In Austen the women are cleverer than the men, which we all know to be true wink.

KindleMum Wed 05-Dec-12 21:00:03

Austen, definitely.Every time I re-read her books I wish she'd lived longer and written more.

Only Bronte book I'd give shelfroom to is the Tenant of Wildfell Hall.

I find myself liking Henry Crawford more and more with each re-read. Fanny would have been much more fun if she'd had at least a quick shag with him. smile
Edmund is such a prig.

SantasComingEarlyHisSackIsFull Wed 05-Dec-12 20:57:28

Austen. I have read them all several times over, but can't be doing with all the wailing and gnashing of teeth with the Brontes. Agree with BOF, Mansfield park is grim: Fanny is such a wet lettuce.

Thackery/Vanity Fair is another good one for me. Would I do ok with Anna Karenina next, d'ya think?

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