Jane Austen's "Persuasion" has the reader rooting for the protagonists to rekindle their estranged affections. But what of the novel's nemeses? In the end, the wily and impious Mr. Elliot casts aside his carefully groomed reputation and persuades the infamous Mrs. Clay to become his mistress.
But every persuader needs a persuadable partner, and Mrs. Clay is no ingénue; she'd send a Willoughby or a Wickham packing. Though no less calculating than those romantic villains, Penelope Clay and William Elliot discover in each other the kind of kindred spirits they fail to find among the titled Elliots.
While highlighting and transfiguring classic scenes from the novel, this unconventional new version provides a romantic pairing on a par with that of Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth. In the process, "Persuadable" illustrates an eternal Austen truth: love is wholly individual, no matter the age or time-period.
Who says a couple of shameless gold diggers can't find true love?
Katherine Woodbury divides her literary interests between eighteenth-century classics and contemporary genre fiction. When not teaching composition and folklore at Southern Maine Community College and Central Maine Community College, Katherine (or Kate) watches Star Trek, Diagnosis Murder, and Jake & the Fatman, checks mystery and romance books out of the library (and forgets to return them), and updates her blog. Her fantasy and science fiction stories have been published in Cicada, Space & Time, and Tales of the Unanticipated.read more