CLASSIC FICTION (PRE C 1945). It's hard to believe that jane austen wrote the sophisticated and acerbic pride and prejudice when she was only 21 years old, in 1797. Originally entitled first impressions, the novel was rejected, revised, retitled, and finally published--anonymously--in 1813, only four years before austen's untimely death. In pride and prejudice, austen calls on her sharp observations of vanity, venality, pomposity, and downright nuttiness in a story about a respectable but far from wealthy family full of daughters--girls who desperately need to find husbands if they are to have any kind of economic security. The eldest of the bennett family, elizabeth, is a bright, opinionated, and complacent young woman whose reaction to an offer of marriage from her wealthy but impossibly arrogant suitor, fitzwilliam darcy, is revulsion.