Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Pride & Prejudice Read-Along | Week 2

Welcome to Week 2 of the Pride & Prejudice read-along! You can learn more about the read-along schedule in this invitation post. (We're reading 2 chapters a day.)

Today we're going to discuss chapters 7-20 (Volume I). If you came prepared, go ahead and share your thoughts in the comments section or in your own post! (Feel free to use the image above, linking back to the Pride & Prejudice read-along tag.) If you still have to catch up on some reading, you're welcome to check in later this week or whenever you're ready. :)

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

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Pride & Prejudice Volume I: Chapters 7-20

Discussion Format: One favorite quote, some general impressions, and three questions for each week's reading.

Favorite Quote

"Laugh as much as you choose, but you will not laugh me out of my opinion." ~ Jane Bennet

General Impressions

We met some infamous characters in this section, including Mr. Wickham and Mr. Collins. But before I talk about them, I have to say how very much I love Mr. Bingley. He's not perfect, but his attentiveness to Jane is the sweetest. :) He defends her family; he sees to her (and their) needs; and he displays such affection in the ways he talks about Jane and how often he talks to her.

Following this, I have to say I'm still delighted by the sisterly bond between Jane and Elizabeth. I think it's the best how happy Elizabeth is for Jane, and how it changes her mood and perspective simply to think about her sister's joy and prospects. I love that! It definitely makes Elizabeth a better heroine in my eyes.

While Jane was in the spotlight quite a bit at the beginning, Elizabeth is now center stage...surrounded by Mr. Darcy, Mr. Wickham, and Mr. Collins. Such very different possibilities in suitors!

I'm still torn about Mr. Darcy. The fact that his full story remains secret makes him mysterious but not someone I can fully sympathize with. Despite knowing what's to be revealed (at least from a movie adaptation), I think his mannerisms and slightly stoic ways still keep me from liking him a great deal. I appreciate that Elizabeth is making him smile more, and I like that his affection for her keeps his temper in check. And I know he has a vastly different personality than Bingley... But his pride certainly presents a barrier to my own affections at this point.

I wonder what I would think of Mr. Wickham if I didn't already know the plot. He's charming, I'll give him that...but his eagerness to put down Mr. Darcy does him no credit, even if he were telling the truth. And while he seems to favor Elizabeth with his attention, it's hard to tell at this point if he actually has any feelings for her.

As for Mr. Collins...well, I have to admit I thought it funny that he's described as "tall" and "heavy-looking," when he's presented as the exact opposite in the 2005 movie adaptation! And I confess Mr. Bennet's amusement in Mr. Collins's behavior is pretty hilarious. ;) I'm glad the narrator provides a description of why Mr. Collins is the way he is...it helps to understand his strange behavior and odd mix of personalities. It feels like he means well, to the limited extent of his self-knowledge, but I think he needs some parental honesty, someone to show him how to be a little more self-aware about his pride and annoying speeches. One would hope that a clergyman would have a deeper understanding of humility...

One other thing I wanted to note was how I've been surprised by the context of some popular quotes. For instance, I didn't realize that Caroline Bingley was the one who said, "I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading!" (When she very clearly has little enjoyment in it.) And instead of Elizabeth saying this line (like in the 2005 movie), it's Mr. Bennet who asks Mr. Collins, "May I ask whether these pleasing attentions proceed from the impulse of the moment, or are the result of previous study?" Interesting!

Discussion Questions

Feel free to answer one, two, or all three of these questions in the comments section or in your own blog post!

1. Which quote or scene made you laugh/smile the most?

2. Mr. Darcy is often silent: in social settings, in his feelings toward Elizabeth, and in defense of his side of Wickham's story. Do you think his silence is "golden" (a wise choice), or do you think he should have been more vocal in these chapters?

3. How would you respond to Mr. Collins if he proposed to you?

Join us next Tuesday for our third discussion! 
(Vol. I: Ch. 21 - Vol. 2: Ch. 11)


Julie said...

Oh didn't we meet quite a few characters in this chapter?! Mr. Collins and Mr. Wickham. Wow! And Amber, honestly you cannot compare the book with the 2005 movie version! ha! It was so far off! But if you do the BBC version with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle then you have the perfect comparison. Or even the older version with David Rintoul and Elizabeth Garvie(my favorite). Here is my thoughts for this week and answers to your questions: https://myfavoritepastime.blogspot.com/2017/10/pride-and-prejudice-read-along-week-2.html

Amber Holcomb said...


Apparently I need to watch a different adaptation at some point. ;) Hehe! And yes, lots of interesting new characters in this reading!

Thanks so much for commenting and posting! :)


Miranda Atchley said...

I really like the quote you chose, Amber! I agree; Lizzy and Jane have a great sister relationship. It’s so nice to see how much they love each other and how happy Lizzy is for Jane. Mr. Bingley is definitely a sweet gentleman. Mr. Darcy is not my favorite Austen hero. I know he becomes more likable further in the book, but he isn’t very likable in the beginning of the book. I don’t dislike him; he just isn’t my favorite.

The 2005 portrayal of Mr. Collins is definitely much different than what the book portrays him as. And I just can’t see the name Whickham without rolling my eyes. LOL!

Such a fun post, Amber! I’m having such fun with this read-along. Can’t wait for more! Here’s the link to my post. https://arealwriterslife.blogspot.com/2017/10/pride-and-prejudice-read-along-week-2.html

Amber Holcomb said...


Sounds like we're on the same page! :) Definitely love the sister bond between Elizabeth and Jane. And I'll have to see what I think at the end...but I think might agree with you about Darcy not being a favorite, especially because of the reason you mention, with him not being very likable for so much of the book.

Isn't it too funny how opposite Mr. Collins is from his 2005 counterpart? ;) And yeah, Wickham is proving himself to be a cad as I've read more...and I have a feeling the reading for Week 4 will make me like him even less.

So glad you're enjoying the read-along, friend!! I am too; this is a great book! :)

Will hop on over to your blog now!


Deborah O'Carroll said...

Eep, I'm behind! Must catch up on the last few chapters for this next week's reading... But I'm this far and have been enjoying this readalong so much. :D I actually like Darcy even more on this read-through. I enjoy catching bits that I didn't before. XD He may be kind of reserved, but Elizabeth isn't giving him a chance, and she's fixed on him being a villain and it's not even OCCURRING to her that he likes her because she's set on hating him. XD He should definitely be more marked in his attentions and regard for her, buuut anyway. I think there are flaws on both sides. :P Sorry you're not quite liking him enough yet, but I relate to him A LOT (I'm reserved too) and so I love noting the little times when he tries to be nice to her etc. And she's just like "nope, don't care". XD I guess I can understand why one wouldn't like him yet but he's MY favorite, so... ;) Anyways, this is so fun! Hopefully I'll catch up and go visit the new post for this week soon...

Amber Holcomb said...


I'm thrilled you're enjoying the read-along! :D

And I love reading your thoughts on Mr. Darcy! Those are such good points about Darcy's personality and how much Elizabeth has villainized him, so that his attempts at affection are rebuffed. After reading his letter and understanding more of his story (as well as Elizabeth's own thoughts), it definitely does paint him in a better light. :)

One thing you noted, though, caught my attention... About how Darcy should probably be a bit more obvious in his regard. It makes me wonder if he's so intent on noticing Jane's lack of obvious regard for Bingley that he doesn't even notice his own issue in that area... Or perhaps it's because he shares the flaw that he's more apt to see it in others? Or perhaps it just wasn't as necessary for guys to display affection in order to woo a girl in that era/society. ;) Interesting things to think about, and I'm glad you brought up all these things about Darcy!

Thank you again for your great comment and observations! Looking forward to hearing more from you! :)