While I truly am looking forward to reading an updated Emma by one of my favorite contemporary authors, there's nothing quite like original Jane Austen. This spree I'm on of her novels has come about due to my mother somehow sharing her Audible app with me, so every book she downloads (read: pays for) appears on my device also for me to listen to (for free)! She happens to have bought all of Jane Austen's novels, and I had been wanting to reread Emma for a while anyway, so I thus began my journey into Austen's world. I started with Persuasion, upon my mother's recommendation, never having read it before. Next came Emma, then Sense and Sensibility, and now I'm just beginning Mansfield Park— again new territory for me. I've been rather shocked realizing how many of her novels I'm unacquainted with!
This glut of Austen has seen words like "approbation" creep into my vocabulary, which I find amusing. Her works are an interesting testament to the English language— even though they were written about 200 years ago their language remains extremely accessible, because her English isn't all that different. Yea "approbation" may have gone out of style, and I'm still a bit fuzzy about what "sanguine" describes, but I chuckled when I heard "awkward" used— it seems like such a modern word. (This isn't to say it's not a testament to her writing as well, because it certainly is. I read Wuthering Heights last spring, which was published decades later, and Ms. Bronte was unable to enthrall me, in large part because there were so many sentences that were so wholly unintelligible to this modern reader. Dickens as well wrote many years after Austen, yet his excessive language can't begin to compare with the clarity of hers.)
For anyone reading this who hasn't picked up an Austen novel in ages (or ever), consider trying out the Audible app for free, and get one of her works as your first free book—making sure of the narrator—and get ready to discover 18th century England like you've never seen (heard?) it before.