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Synopsis

This version contains 2 works of Jane Austen With over 85 Illustrations and Audiobook Link.

1 “Pride and Prejudice”
The narrative opens with Mr Bingley, a wealthy young bachelor, moving into Netherfield Park in the neighbourhood of the Bennet family (who live at Longbourne). Mr Bingley is soon well-received, while his friend Mr Darcy makes a less favourable first impression by appearing proud and condescending. When Elizabeth Bennet overhears herself slighted by Mr Darcy, she forms a prejudice against him. Mr Bingley singles out Elizabeth's elder sister, Jane, for particular attention and it soon becomes apparent that they have formed an attachment to one another.

On paying a visit to Mr Bingley's sister, Jane is caught in a heavy downpour, catches cold and is forced to stay at Netherfield for several days. Elizabeth arrives to nurse her sister and is thrown into frequent company with Mr Darcy who begins to perceive his attachment to her.

The Bennets' cousin (and heir to Mr Bennet as daughters could not inherit) Mr Collins, a clergyman, pays a visit to the Bennets. Everyone is much amused by his obsequious veneration of his employer, the noble Lady Catherine de Bourgh, as well as by his self-important and pedantic nature (with Mr Bennet and Elizabeth being rather repulsed by it). It soon becomes apparent that Mr Collins has come to Longbourne to choose a wife from among the Bennet sisters and Elizabeth has been singled out. At the same time, Elizabeth forms an acquaintance with Mr Wickham, a militia officer stationed in the village who claims to have been very seriously mistreated by Mr Darcy, despite having been a ward of Mr Darcy's father. This tale, and Elizabeth's attraction to Mr Wickham, adds fuel to her dislike of Mr Darcy.

2 “Lady Susan”
Lady Susan Vernon, at around 30 to 40 years old, she is a widow of just a few months, who is known to flagrantly manipulate and seduce single and married men alike. She uses flirtation and seduction to gain her way through life. As a widow and a mother, her main goals are to quickly marry off her daughter Frederica (whom she despises and regards as stupid and stubborn) to a rich enough man, and to marry an even better match herself. Mrs. Vernon describes her as "...really excessively pretty. I have seldom seen so lovely a woman as Lady Susan. She is delicately fair, with fine grey eyes and dark eyelashes; and from her appearance one would not suppose her more than five and twenty, though she must in fact be ten years older. I was certainly not disposed to admire her...but I cannot help feeling that she possesses an uncommon union of symmetry, brilliancy and grace." Lady Susan is extremely cold towards her daughter, for whom she feels little or no affection: she calls her "a stupid girl, and has nothing to recommend her." It is possible that Jane Austen drew on the character of the mother of her neighbour, a beautiful Mrs. Craven, who had actually treated her daughters quite cruelly, locking them up, beating and starving them, till they ran away from home or married beneath their class to escape.  There is an ironic contrast between the beautiful but determinedly chaste Susannah of the Old Testament and Lady Susan.

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