Another week and all sorts of news… I post here several of interest. I will do a separate post tomorrow on book reviews and booklists…so make some room on your bedside table…
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I am a lover of booklists, and here is one from Ms. Place on Jane Austen’s World Blog (taken partially from the Big Read on the BBC, and several other blogs)… I repeat this here and send it out to you all…a great list, so follow the instructions and see where you have been and where you might go on your reading journey….
(though I do have to add that this is not a list of the 100 BEST books by any means…it seems an interesting compilation of classics and a number of contemporary titles that are not perhaps the best literature, but good reads…there are also some very obvious errors and omissions…, but one cannot quibble with any such list…it is always subjective and bears the bias of the listmaker….but a great place to start in case you need a push. I also find it hard to believe that the average adult has only read SIX of these titles? Yikes! So I append the list with none of my markings as yet…I will post my results in a comment. So let’s hear from you and what your reading score might be….
“The Big Read reckons that the average adult has only read 6 of the top 100 books they’ve printed.
1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicize those you intend to read.
3) Underline the books you love.
4) Strike out the books you have no intention of ever reading, or were forced to read at school and hated.
5) Reprint this list in your own blog so we can try and track down these people who’ve only read 6 and force books upon them.”
1 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch – George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House – Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis
34 Emma – Jane Austen
35 Persuasion – Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne
41 Animal Farm – George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving
45 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding
50 Atonement – Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi – Yann Martel
52 Dune – Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
62 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History – Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road – Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
72 Dracula – Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses – James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal – Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession – AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple – Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web – EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (a good many of them)
90 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
94 Watership Down – Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet – William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo
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Some tidbits for this week:
- Our own Janeite Mae sent me the following about a downloadable walking tour of Jane Austen’s Bath… if you have an MP3 player, you are all set! (it says it is compatible with iTunes, and hopefully that is the case….usually us ipod users are out of luck with these free downloads…) The website for Jane Austen’s Bath has much on the City and JA’srelationship to it…. information on events, sites and tours, etc. and many interesting links [this link is now also in our sidebar under “Regency & Georgian England”]
- At Austenprose, Laurel Ann pens a fine review of Mr. Darcy’s Diary by Maya Slater, with several comments questioning the need for Darcy’s roguish behavior…..do you want YOUR Darcy “tumbling the maid”?
- Mrs. Elton Sez (a.k.a. Diana Birchall) has a new advice column entry at Jane Austen Today...
- And our usual thanks to Ms. Place at Jane Austen’s World for sending me off to the Georgiana Duchess of Devonshire Gossip Guide and the Marie Antoinette Gossip Guide, both filled with all sorts of 18th-century info…
- At Austenblog see the link “Is Tony Blair Wickham?” and this week’s Daily Mail rant picturing Gordon Brown as various literary characters….too funny, so thanks Mags!
- A review of “Jane Austen’s Guide to Dating” http://readingoutside.blogspot.com/2008/07/36-jane-austens-guide-to-dating.html
- The JASNA New Jersey Chapter poses the question: Ten Words: Yes, just ten words. Please think of ten words we think best describe Jane Austen and her works. I see no comments at this point, so let’s think on this one and participate!…
- an old article from The Guardian, but always useful to have a list of books to read…this one includes “Northanger Abbey” (and is therefore a fine list!) see at http://www.guardian.co.uk:80/books/2002/may/23/bestbooks.comics
- A “Rethinking Jane Austen Blog” at http://rethinkingjaneausten.wordpress.com:80/2008/07/23/welcome-to-the-rethinking-jane-austen-course-blog/ A group blog devoted to critically exploring ‘popular’ responses to Jane Austen’s works. By students in the English Program at La Trobe University, Australia. Guests are welcome to join the discussion.
- More news on Pride & Prejudice, the Musical, to open in Rochester NY in October at: http://www.prweb.com/releases/Broadway/JaneAusten/prweb1128704.htm and for more information on the play see http://www.prideandprejudicebroadway.com/
- The new site JaneAusten.org has a Pemberley desktop wallpaper you can save on your computer.
- here’s another blog about Jane Austen: http://thejaneaustenproject.blogspot.com:80/
- and another Jane Austen in Portuguese, currently with a critique of the P&P movie adaptations with great pictures (in Portuguese of course!)
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Beginning August 1, “Jane Austen’s Regency World Magazine,” published by the Jane Austen Centre in Bath, will offer a subscription discount of twenty percent to members of the Jane Austen Society of North America. The offer is not yet “live,” but you can read about it on this preview page: http://www.janeausten.co.uk/regencyworld/page.ihtml?id=12
JASNA has a 2-page article in each issue of the magazine, and favorites Maggie Lane and Sheryl Craig are also regular contributors. The contents of the current and all back issues can be viewed online with one sample article downloadable from each issue.
Also see Laurel Ann’s post on Jane Austen Today about the latest July Newsletter from the Jane Austen Center. You can sign up for this online newsletter at the Center’s website….and be sure to take the “Pride & Prejudice” Quiz …[you might just find you need to re-read the book, a perfect thought for a summer’s day!]
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ENGLISH COUNTRY DANCE CLASSES
IN PLATTSBURGH, NY
A series of 6 Tuesday night classes,
starting Tuesday July 22, 2008
Teaching by Wendy Gilchrist
TIME: 7 pm to 9 pm
DATES: July 22 & 29, August 5, 12, 19, 26
Langlois-Racine Dance Studio
34 Riley Avenue, Plattsburgh, NY
COST: $30/person for the series (6 classes)
Register at the door at your first class
(Registration form attached, more available at door)
Sharon Schenkel at firstname.lastname@example.org or 518-643-0310
Wendy Gilchrist at 518-563-1834
VERMONTERS: Contact Wendy Gilchrist if you’d like a ride to class from the ferry landing in Plattsburgh (that is, you’d go on the ferry as a foot passenger). You must be at the Plattsburgh ferry landing by 6:15pm. Contact Wendy at email@example.com or leave a phone message a day ahead at 518-563-1834.
CLASSES IN VERMONT: Wednesday nights in August at the home of Tom and Val Medve. Drop in, no advance registration required. Suggested donation $3 per person per class. For more info, please contact Val at firstname.lastname@example.org or 802-899-2378.
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Over the weekend I read Penny Gay’s thought-provoking Persuasions article: “Jane Fairfax and the ‘She Tragedies’ of the Eighteenth Century.” But I am curious as to where a statement (not footnoted) comes from; can anyone out there help ???
Dr Gay makes a wonderful case for Jane Fairfax to be compared with the type of characters portrayed so well onstage by Sarah Siddons; these characters usually went mad, killed themselves, or simply died. To sustain the proposed connection page 128 has the following parenthetical claim: Austen, of course, knew well where Jane [Fairfax] really belonged as a character: she told her family that Jane did not long survive her marriage to Frank [Churchill].
Told her family made me conclude that A Memoir of Jane Austen was the source; but that cannot be, for here are all the statements regarding the ‘future’ of Austen’s characters in the 1871 edition:
“She [Jane Austen] certainly took a kind of parental interest in the beings whom she had created, and did not dismiss them from her thoughts when she had finished her last chapter. … She would, if asked, tell us many little particulars about the subsequent career of some of her people. In this traditionary way we learned that Miss Steele never succeeded in catching the Doctor; that Kitty Bennet was satisfactorily married to a clergyman near Pemberley, while Mary obtained nothing higher than one of her uncle Philip’s clerks, and was content to be considered a star in the socitey of Meriton; that the ‘considerable sum’ given by Mrs. Norris to William Price was one pound; that Mr. Woodhouse survived his daughter’s marriage, and kept her and Mr. Knightley from settling at Donwell, about two years; and that the letters placed by Frank Churchill before Jane Fairfax, which she swept away unread, contained the word ‘pardon.’ Of the good people in ‘Northanger Abbey’ and ‘Persuasion’ we know nothing more than what is written…” (pp. 148-9)
Did Dr Gay mix up Mr Woodhouse’s demise with the Frank-Jane ‘pardon’?? Or does a more extensive list of what happened to Jane Austen’s characters after the book(s) ended exist elsewhere??
I do have Le Faye’s Reminiscences of Caroline Austen to check, but see nothing there in a cursory look; I do not own Caroline’s My Aunt Jane Austen, but have searched through MA Austen-Leigh’s Personal Aspects of Jane Austen and find no mention of ‘fairfax’ or ‘churchill’ - so I throw open the question for discussion:
Did Jane Fairfax, according to Jane Austen, not long survive her marriage??
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