Heroines... post four on Jane Austen

Jane Austen has the touch of a master in creating a main character, then putting her in that perfect situation that brings out the characteristic which defines the heroine and serves to be one of the main ingredients by which the tension of the story builds. For instance, today let’s consider her book …

Northanger Abbey
Catherine Morland is a naive country girl that is taken out into society for the first time by childless neighbors, Mr. and Mrs. Allen. In Bath (this is actually a place in England; they’re not taking a bath!), she meets Henry Tilney, a fine witty young man who comes from a wealthy family. He is captivated by her innocence and simple country manners. Henry’s father, who is more interested in money and position, is informed by someone (other than Henry) that Catherine is to inherit a great fortune from Mr. Allen.

As a true genius, Austen has made Catherine an avid reader of Gothic stories, which admits a closer look at her inexperience and simple-mindedness, not to mention creating a fertile ground for her wild imagination when she is taken to Northanger Abbey, an old monastery being done over in as modern a fashion as that time would permit. Nevertheless, the outward appearance and interior design is enough for Catherine to be carried away under the influence of her Gothic stories!

Will love bloom... or is to be strangled in the dark halls of Northanger Abbey?