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Austenesque World, here I go

November 8, 2013

It’s time to stop pretending and admit the truth, I not only am an Austen fan, but withouth realizing it I just become an Austenesque fan; I have read 4 novels so far: “The Darcys of Pemberley” by Shannon Winslow; “His Good Opinion” by Nancy Kelley; “Mr. Darcy Takes a Wife” by Linda Berdoll; “The Confessions of Fitzwilliam Darcy” by Mary Street… Ok, no way I just read 4 novels. I’m looking at my Austenesque book collection right now, and it’s fatter than I thought… “None But You” and “For You Alone” by Susan Kaye; “Mr. & Mrs. Fitzwilliam Darcy”,  “Loving Mr. Darcy”, “My Dearest Mr. Darcy”, “In the Arms of Mr. Darcy” and “The Trouble with Mr. Darcy” by Sharon Lathan (Her novels are shorter than other and the same story evolves through the novels, that is, the next book is a sequel of the previous).

I just entered the “Austen-mistery” world by reading “Death Comes to Pemberley”, by P. D. James. I liked the novel as I usually do anything related to P+P et al. but I have to admit I was a little bit dissapointed. The book starts with a mistery, without focusing on the caracters, hence you expect the book to be focused on the murder, not the characters, but the same questions that are created at the beginning remain such almost until the end, there are barely no new clues to make you imagine different scerarios, hence the mistery doesn’t evolve until the end; the legal process gains protagonism but again the evidences offered during the legal process are almost the same as they were at the beginnig, and the characters of the Darcy and Bingley’s households have been at the background, so nothing happens there. I loved the last scene though, I thought of it as really sweet, but that just made me long for more of that during the novel.

Going back to Austenesque world, I just decided to read more and more novels, not only P+P versions/sequels/pre-sequels, but also P, which I’ve only read one version (divided in two books), S+S, MP, E (I’d loooove to hear more about my dear Mr. Knightley) and NA.

So please, any suggestions will be highly welcomed.

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P+P=200: Best adaptation?

January 28, 2013

January 28th, 1813: Pride and Prejudice is published. It takes some time, but by 2013, after a failed mayan Armageddon, P&P survives and gives live to tons of movies and I’m willing to say thousands of books, short stories, internet blogs, etc.

Thanks to Jane Austen, we’ve been introduced to the world of Mr. Darcy and Miss Elizabeth, but nowadays we could say the opposite. How many people have been introduced to Jane Austen through a sequel or a movie based on Pride and Prejudice?? I include myself in this group.

I’m not from an english country, and though I read books in english class during high school, all of them were short versions of unknown books. I wish there’d been someone then who introduce me to Jane Austen. Maybe in english class, or literature… Anyway, as it happens, I had to wait until I saw You’ve Got A Mail for the seed of Jane Austen to be planted in my mind.

Back to topic, I’m going to post a poll about the P&P’s adaptations I’ve seen. Which one do you prefer (you can choose more than one)?? And please, if you know another movie or TV series based on P&P that it’s not here, let me know.

So let’s the voting begin!!

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Happy Birthday Austen!!

December 16, 2012

Usually I use this blog to write about Jane Austen’s novels, or their versions on TV, other novels, etc. Today’s different.

About 10 years ago, when I was young(er) and my relationship with my mother wasn’t very good (actually, we use to argue all day long), I was watching the movie “You’ve Got Mail”, and I got curious about that book they used to mention; Pride and Prejudice. I bought it, I read it, I loved it. From that day on, I start to look for other novels written by that Jane Austen, a stranger to me at first. I start looking for adaptations of her novels, some more realistic (who can forget P&P’s version of BBC, 1995??) than others (Bridget Jones’ Diary, Clueless…). I was so 24h Austen that I had to share it, and my mother was delighted with the Austen’s world as well. Soon the arguments decrease; it was easy to decide what to watch on TV, we had plenty of things to talk about (all of them Austen related), etc.

Today is the anniversary of Jane Austen’s Birthday, and we have celebrated by dressing up (trying to dress as Jane would have done), cooking 18th century receipts and watching Persuasion (2007) and Pride and Prejudice (2005) while we played cards.

This post isn’t only to celebrate Austen’s birthday and her work, but also to celebrate what her novels have meant to people like me. Giving hope, befriending new people, getting old friends and relatives closer, etc.

If you wAusten_bdayant to share something, like what I’ve shared with you, please, be my guest.

Happy birthday!!!

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Janeites

October 2, 2012

I inaugurate the new design of my blog by writing, not about Jane Austen, but about two Janeites whose novels I had the pleasure to read.

I’d like to start saying that, before these books, I had some strong opinions about reading Janeites’ work, I thought that reading Pride and Prejudice’s version of someone else would destroy the idea I had of Austen’s story, but I’m glad to say I was completely wrong, because I was already building my own version in my head while reading P&P. Austen didn’t write everything so there’re some looks, thoughts and conversations that are left to the imagination. It’s so nice to read other’s version and see that some things are the same. When you found something that you never imagined, either you are glad that someone show those looks and thoughts to you, or you prefer to keep your own version.
Either way, I have to thank these two Janeites. They won’t be the only ones to open my eyes to new paths, or encourage me to find my own path, but they were the first ones.

Thank you so much:

@nancy_kelley / Nancy Kelley with “His Good Opinion”

@JaneAustenSays / Shannon Winslow with “The Darcys of Pemberley”

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Happy Valentine’s day

February 14, 2012

“I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you. Unjust I may have been, weak and resentful I have been, but never inconstant. You alone have brought me to Bath. For you alone I think and plan. Have you not seen this? Can you fail to have understood my wishes? I had not waited even these ten days, could I have read your feelings, as I think you must have penetrated mine. I can hardly write. I am every instant hearing something which overpowers me. You sink your voice, but I can distinguish the tones of that voice when they would be lost on others. Too good, too excellent creature! You do us justice, indeed. You do believe that there is true attachment and constancy among men. Believe it to be most fervent, most undeviating, in
F. W.”

“I must go, uncertain of my fate; but I shall return hither, or follow your party, as soon as possible. A word, a look will be enough to decide whether I enter your father’s house this evening or never.”

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Indian assembly ball

February 1, 2012

As a version of the novel, the film Bride and Prejudice doesn’t even deserve to hold the same title as the novel. There are a lot of differences. I don’t really care about the trivial ones, like the number of sisters (4 in this case), the period of time and place of the movie or the names of the characters. They even have deleted some characters, but which version can throw the first rock?

Keira Knightley’s, though more accurate than the Bollywood version, only shows one Bingley’s sister, and there’s no Mr. Hurts or Gardiners’ children, which brings to scene Mrs. Bennet justification for her brother’s help in Lydia’s elopement as follows “and so he should help, he’s far richer than us and has no children”.
The one discrepancy of Bride and Prejudice with the novel that does bother me more is the fact that Lizzy already loves Mr. Darcy before he declares himself to her, which makes her refusal a result more out of jealousy than of prejudice. But how can we forget her reflection that “Vanity, not love, has been my folly”, and I can’t reconcile this volatile character, proven by her rejection, with Jane Austen. I mean, her characters are rational, and those who aren’t, don’t marry their true love (like Marianne, for example).
Despite that (and I really dislike this refusal-while-in-love thing), I think the movie is worth watching due to some scenes like the following.
Enjoy it!

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Persuasion 1971

September 10, 2011

I’ve discovered this adaptation recently, and I have to admit that I loved it! It’s the best version of the book, which is a very important factor for me. I specially love the final scenes, which don’t appear either in the 1995’s version or the 2007’s. I wish BBC or someone else would do a modern adaptation of Persuasion. But since this day is to come, let’s enjoy this piece of Austen.

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