We mentioned in the Jane Austen News a week or two back that Audible Studios will soon be releasing (it’s due on September 4th) a new dramatised audio adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma. However, it seems that us Austen fans don’t have to wait even that long for a new audiobook recording of one of Jane’s novels.
Rosamund Pike, who played Jane Bennet in the 2005 film adaptation of Pride and Prejudice, has narrated the newly released production of Sense and Sensibility. She’s previously narrated Pride and Prejudice for Audible Studios, and done a fantastic job, so we’re very pleased to hear her new recording.
Below is a behind-the-scenes interview in which she explains why she adores Jane’s work and why it’s still so powerful to this day.
There’s quite a crossover between Jane Austen fans and Poldark fans. The worlds of Austen and Poldark have quite a bit in common after all. Not least, it would seem, the effect which the two have on UK tourism.
Earlier in the year, Trip Advisor found in its travel trends report that one in five global travellers visited a location because they saw it on a TV show. In fact Poldark has proved to be so popular that it’s said to have influenced around 14% of all visitors to Cornwall!
It’s not just Poldark that has inspired travels to the UK though. The Game of Thrones series are reported to be worth around £30 million a year to the local economy in Northern Ireland. Meanwhile Downton Abbey saw Highclere Castle, the stately home at which Downton Abbey was filmed, become a major tourist attraction – visitor numbers doubled to 1,200 visitors a day following its starring role in the series.
But how does this all measure up against the Austen-inspired travels?
Well, Lyme Park in Cheshire (which appeared as the exterior of Pemberley in the BBC’s 1995 adaptation of Pride and Prejudice) saw a 176% increase in visitor numbers after the series aired. The scene where Mr Darcy dives into a lake at Pemberley and emerges dripping in a wet shirt only to meet Elizabeth Bennet was named the most memorable moment in British TV drama.
At the Jane Austen News we were really interested to see how many other period drama fans (like us!) enjoy visiting the filming locations, and just how much of an impact that can have on the visitor numbers overall!
At the Jane Austen News a bookshelf is far more than a bookshelf…it is a world of worlds, a work of art, and a source of ongoing internal debate – how best to organise it? Should it be organised alphabetically by the last name of the author? By genre? Date published? Height of book? Colour of cover? Well, we’re not the only ones who arrange and then rearrange our shelves on a regular basis…
In The Times Literary Supplement, Mary Beard (a classicist, and author of many books such as Women & Power: A Manifesto) has been writing about the problem of organising bookshelves.
Every so often—when I come to try to organise the books at home—I am overcome with admiration for the skills of librarians (and, as for Mr. Dewey Decimal, he seems a saint). […] One possibly sensible way of organising this collection would have been straightforwardly alphabetical. But after a few minutes following this scheme, I soon resisted it. I am a great admirer of Jane Austen and Margaret Atwood, but I wasn’t sure that they sat easily next to each other on the shelf. And if they didn’t, then certainly the same went for Chaucer, Camus and Amanda Cross (that’s Amanda Cross of ‘Death in a Tenured Position’, in case you don’t know). I came down to the revised view that old classics (apart, that is, from the Greek and Latin and other ancient Classics) should best live separately from ‘modern’ novels.
However, The Weekly Standard (an online and physical weekly magazine based in Washington) has a different take on Mary’s organisation decision:
Austen and Atwood don’t sit “easily next to each other”? Dear Mary, whatever do you mean? That’s the great pleasure of organizing books alphabetically—running your eyes over names and titles centuries apart (but sitting right next to each other there on the shelf) and occasionally thinking about how different and, at the same time, how similar they are.
We can’t help but agree. We have now, yet again, rearranged our bookshelves into alphabetical order and had great fun thinking of all of the ways in which Austen is similar (or not) to J.G. Ballard.
Any other bookshelf organisation theories for us to try?
We’ve just had the pleasure of hosting a small book signing in the Regency Tearooms at the Jane Austen Centre, so we thought we’d share some of the pictures with you.
Below is author Carrie Kablean signing copies of her Pride and Prejudice inspired story What Kitty Did Next (the first five chapters of which you can read here.)
We now have exclusive signed copies of What Kitty Did Next available to purchase here.
On an end note, we thought you might enjoy this quip from this year’s ongoing Edinburgh Fringe Festival (3rd to 27th August):
Patriarchy is putting Jane Austen on £10 notes the same time as bringing in contactless.
Jane Austen News is our weekly compilation of stories about or related to Austen. Here we will feature a variety of items, including craft tutorials, reviews, news stories, articles and photos from around the world. If you’d like to include your story, please contact us with a press release or summary, along with a link. You can also submit unique articles for publication in our Online Magazine.
Don’t miss our latest news – become a Jane Austen Member and receive a digest of stories, articles and Jane Austen news every week. You will also be able to access our online Magazine with over 1000 articles, test your knowledge with our weekly quiz and get offers on our Online Giftshop. Plus new members get an exclusive 10% off voucher to use in the Online Giftshop.