I love Jane Austen’s books and I think it’s quite a good opening sentence for this Ann Radcliffe’s The Mysteries of Udolpho tiny review. Because lets face the truth, I don’t think that someone else is reading her books these days. I do hope I’m wrong. And beside the small groups of fanatics of Austen’s works there is other group of admirers of Gothic horror/romance novels who reads them in winter evenings, surrounded by light of candles and howling wind.
But back to the Mysteries of Udolpho. I bought it few years ago (after watching some Jane Austen’s fan movie) and I left it on bookshelf for those long years. Because it’s a Gothic romance. Probably very exalted and “romantic” to the core. And funny thing is that it is all that but in the same way it has quite interesting plot. Main heroine faints from time to time, and she is taken by horros and strange fears even more, but in the same time she tries to actually restrain her vivid imagination and rest calm. She is again righteous to the core but this didn’t interrupt her to be quite nosy about all strange things.
I was afraid that this book will be long and not very intriguing, but I did read it with great interest just because I was honestly curious how Emilia, the main character will end (and be sure that I often can guess what will happen in this types of books). Add to it this nice feeling that you are reading something that Jane Austen read, and bunch of others women in her times. Think about beautiful landscapes and pleases too (and strange gloomy castles!) which were so vividly present in the book. And you will come with quite a nice and interesting book which is not only entertaining but gives quite inside into those strange but so romantic times.
I wander if you’ve hear about The Mysteries of Udolpho?:-)