Val McDermid’s Northanger Abbey is a modern day take on Austen’s version- with some pretty hilarious results.
We find Cat Morland living in her daydreams in Dorset when her neighbors, the Allens, offer her a chance to get out of Dorset to Edinburgh for the Fringe Festival in the summer. It is there she meets the mysterious and dark haired Henry Tilney at a dance with his sister Ellie while also meeting Bella and John Thorpe who happens to be her lawyer brothers’ friend.
So, Edinburgh becomes a little more interesting from here on out with Cat intent on spending time with Henry, even if Bella and John try to dissuade her and bring her along on their adventures. There is also a small cameo of James, Cat’s brother, who brings a little something to the table.
These parts provide some hilarious content with Cat seeking and stalking on the internet, a surprise (and done) engagement and a trip to the mysterious Northanger Abbey in the Borders. Cat’s imagination at the Abbey is hilarious and her suspicions all the more reason to read it. Got to say General Tilney felt a little like Charles Dance to me.
This books had me laughing right through and it made me want to read Jane Austen’s version. It is a good book if, like Cat, you like a bit of escapism.
Until next time!