I think the one character in the original Persuasion that was treated harshest was Mary, the only married Elliot sister and the youngest. I think readers get a few unsympathetic and one dimensional look at Mary. I hope I have treated her with more fairness than Austen did both in the book and with this character profile.
Here are five things you won’t learn about Mary from reading Modern Persuasion.
- Mary’s favorite books to read are romance and erotica books, but only in secret. Emma knows this about her sister and makes it easier for Mary by sneaking the books into the house so Mary doesn’t end up reading 50 Shades of Grey over and over.
- Her favorite movie is Grease 2. It’s not that she doesn’t love the original movie, but she loves Michelle Pfeiffer more than Olivia Newton John. She knows all the songs to both movies and both her sons sing Reproduction.
- Of all three sisters, she has worked through her grief over their mother’s death best. She honors her memory of her mother, Violet, by volunteering with charities working to fund research ovarian cancer.
- She also honors her mother in her own home by making her mother’s favorite steak tacos on Tuesday nights.
- Mary gave up working to take care of her sons while they are young, but she wishes she hadn’t done so. She misses her alone time. She has only just started trying to find a better balance between her personal needs and her family’s needs. This is often why she wants to be involved in what Emma does.