Molly’s Pick

Chapter 5

“Emma has been meaning to read more ever since she was twelve years old. I have seen a great many lists of her drawing up various times of books that she meant to read regularly through — and very good lists they were — very well chosen, and very neatly arranged — sometimes alphabetically, and sometimes by some other rule. The list she drew up when only fourteen — I remember thinking it did her judgement so much credit, that I preserved it some time; and I dare say she may have made out a very good list now. But I have done with expecting any course of steady reading from Emma.”

–Mr. Knightley (Austen 28)

Clare’s Pick

Chapter 9

“What can it be. Miss Woodhouse? What can it be? I have not an idea — I cannot guess it in the least […] Can it be Neptune?

Behold him there, the monarch of the seas!

Or a trident? or a mermaid? Or a shark?

Oh, no! shark is only one syllable. It must be very clever, or he would not have brought it. Oh! Miss Woodhouse, do you think we shall ever find it out?”

–Harriet Smith (Austen 58)

Ian’s Pick

Chapter 10

“They now walked on together quietly, till within view of the vicarage pales, when a sudden resolution, of at least getting Harriet into the house, made her [Emma] again find something very much amiss about her boot, and fall behind to arrange it once more. She then broke the lace off short, and dexterously throwing it into a ditch, was presently obliged to entreat them to stop, and acknowledge her inability to put herself to rights so as to be able to walk home in tolerable comfort.”

(Austen 72)

Lena’s Pick

Chapter 18

I think this is the first time we get to see Emma triumph over Mr. Knightley not only in argument, but in empathy for others. We readers have always known Mr. Knightley as emma’s intellectual equal, so this scene, in which she makes several solid and sympathetic points about why Frank Churchill ought to be well-regarded despite his flakiness, highlights where Emma is able to hold more kindness and space for nuance than Mr. Knightley. This is pivotal in that it surprises Emma and hints to the reader of the shifting balances between the two characters.

(Austen 273)

Kaylee’s Pick

Chapter 38

This chapter is very fast-paced and intriguing with the ridiculous drama surrounding the long-awaited ball. What makes the ball the absolute best is the way Austen forces the many plot lines of the novel to collide in a chapter that features practically every character. There’s drama between the Volume 1 love triangle: Emma, Harriet, and Mr. Elton. Then there’s even more mystery from Volume 2’s feature characters: Emma, Frank Churchill, and Jane Fairfax. The collision of each volume’s main plot results in Volume 3’s focus: the romantic development of Emma and Mr. Knightley.

(Austen 258)

Lilia’s Pick

Chapter 40

I love to write all over my books and comment on the story alongside the characters, but in this chapter I felt as if I became on of the “girls” and just enjoyed the moment of being there in the melodrama of Harriet’s treasures and confessions. I then bookmarked this chapter as one of my absolutely favorites. I hope that when you read it, you feel a part of Emma and Harriet’s girl hang too as we support Harriet in letting go of her box of ex’s things. Breakups are hard, especially when the other person didn’t even realize they were courting you (poor Harriet). 

(Austen 273)

Nicole’s Pick

Chapter 49

“‘As a friend!’ — repeated Mr. Knightley. — ‘Emma, that I fear is a word—No, I have no wish—Stay yes, why should I hesitate?==I have gone too far already for concealment.—Emma, I accept your offer—Extraordinary as it may seem, I accept it, and refer to you as a friend.—Tell me then, do I have no chance of ever succeeding?’”

This is my favorite quote because (1) this is when I realized that this was actually happening, that all my worries were over, and (2) I like how he is talking to himself, it feels out of character for him which kind of shows how far this man is gone, and (3) the last line have me goosebumps, and I felt like I could viscerally feel the emotion and anguish in his voice. 

–Mr. Knightley (Austen 348)

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