Hot off the Presses!! ~ Jane Austen’s Regency World Magazine, No. 68

Laurel Ann (Austenprose):

The new issue of Jane Austen’s Regency World is “out”!

Originally posted on Jane Austen in Vermont:

JARW68-cover

New issue of Jane Austen’s Regency World!

The March/April 2014 issue [No. 68] of Jane Austen’s Regency World magazine is now published and will be mailed to subscribers this week.  In it you can read about:

  • William Beckford, the remarkable author and architect who led a somewhat sordid life
  • Joanna Trollope on her rewriting of Sense & Sensibility for HarperCollins’s Austen Project
  • Mary Russell Mitford, the writer who sought to emulate Jane Austen
  • How Jane Austen supported her fellow writers by subscribing to their books
  • The story of Julie Klassen, marketing assistant turned best-selling Regency romance novelist

 ***********

Plus: News, Letters, Book Reviews and information from Jane Austen Societies in the US and the UK.

And: Test your knowledge with our exclusive Jane Austen quiz, and read about the shocking behaviour of our latest Regency Rogue

You should subscribe! Make sure that you are…

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Giveaway Winner Announced for The Complete Novels of Jane Austen

The Complete Novels of Jane Austen, Race Point Edition 2013It’s time to announce the winner of the hardcover copy of The Complete Novels of Jane Austen. The lucky winner drawn at random is:

  • TracyH who left a message of December 17, 2013

Congratulations TracyH! To claim your prize, please contact me with your full name and address by January 02, 2014 or you will forfeit your prize! Shipment to US addresses only.

Thanks to all who left comments and to Race Point Publishing for the giveaway copy.

Happy Birthday Jane Austen!

Cover image of The Complete Novels of Jane Austen courtesy of Race Point Publishing © 2013; text Laurel Ann Nattress © 2013, Austenprose.com

Austenprose’s Top Jane Austen-inspired Books of 2013

Jane Austen Pop Art Banner

Huzzah! It has been a banner year for Jane Austen-inspired books in 2013. The bicentenary of Pride and Prejudice motivated many authors to take up their pens in celebration resulting in a fabulous selection of new titles. From historical and contemporary novels to non-fiction and scholarly, Austen-inspired books were present in several genres making our favorite author even more popular than ever.

We reviewed 76 books and short stories in 2013. Here is our annual list of top favorites .

Top 10 Austenesque Historical Novels: 

  1. Return to Longbourn, by Shannon Winslow (5 stars)
  2. One Thread Pulled: The Dance with Mr. Darcy, by Diana J. Oaks (5 stars)
  3. Loving Miss Darcy: The Brides of Pemberley, by Nancy Kelley (5 stars)
  4. The Pursuit of Mary Bennet: A Pride and Prejudice Novel, by Pamela Mingle (4 stars)
  5. Longbourn: A Novel, by Jo Baker (4 stars)
  6. The Passions of Dr. Darcy, by Sharon Lathan (4 stars)
  7. Falling For Mr. Darcy, by KaraLynne Mackrory (4 stars)
  8. Darcy’s Decision: Given Good Principles Volume 1, by Maria Grace (4 stars)
  9. When They Fall in Love: Darcy and Elizabeth in Italy, by Mary Simonsen (4 stars)
  10. Young Mr. Darcy in Love: Pride and Prejudice Continues (The Darcys and the Bingleys) (Volume 7) by Marsha Altman (4 stars)

Top 5 Austenesque Contemporary Novels: 

  1. Pride, Prejudice and the Perfect Match, by Marilyn Brant (5 stars)
  2. Undressing Mr. Darcy, by Karen Doornebos (5 stars)
  3. My Own Mr. Darcy, by Karey White (4 stars)
  4. Sense & Sensibility (Austen Project), by Joanna Trollope (3.5 stars)
  5. Finding Colin Firth: A Novel, by Mia March (3.5 stars)

Top 5 Austenesque Paranormal/Fantasy Novels:

  1. Jane, Actually, by Jennifer Petkus (5 stars)
  2. Project Darcy, by Jane Odiwe (4 stars)
  3. Austensibly Ordinary, by Alyssa Goodnight (4 stars)
  4. Attempting Elizabeth, by Jessica Grey (4 stars)
  5. A Jane Austen Daydream, by Scott Southard (4 stars)

Top 5 Austen-inspired Nonfiction Books:

  1. Among the Janeites: A Journey Through the World of Jane Austen Fandom, by Deborah Jaffe (6 stars)
  2. The Annotated Northanger Abbey, edited by David Shapard (5 stars)
  3. Walking Jane Austen’s London, by Louise Allen (5 stars)
  4. Mr. Darcy’s Guide to Courtship: The Secrets of Seduction from Jane Austen’s Most Eligible Bachelor, by Fitzwilliam Darcy (5 stars)
  5. The List Lover’s Guide to Jane Austen, by Joan Strasbaugh (4.5 stars)

Top 5 Austen-inspired Scholarly Books: 

  1. The Real Jane Austen: A Life in Small Things, by Paula Byrne (5 stars)
  2. Jane Austen’s England, by Roy and Lesley Adkins (5 stars)
  3. Sense and Sensibility: An Annotated Edition, edited by Patricia Meyer Spacks (4 stars)
  4. Matters of Fact in Jane Austen: History, Location, and Celebrity, by Janine Barchas (4 stars)
  5. What Matters in Jane Austen: Twenty Crucial Puzzles Solved, by John Mullan (4 stars)

Top 3 Austenesque Young Adult Novels: 

  1. The Trouble with Flirting, by Claire LaZebnick (4.5 stars)
  2. Emmalee (Austen Diaries), by Jenni James (4 stars)
  3. For Darkness Shows the Stars, by Diana Peterfreund (4 stars) 

Top 3 Austenesque Self-published Novels:

  1. Return to Longbourn, by Shannon Winslow (5 stars)
  2. One Thread Pulled: The Dance with Mr. Darcy, by Diana J. Oaks (5 stars)
  3. Loving Miss Darcy: The Brides of Pemberley, by Nancy Kelley (5 stars)

Top 3 Austen or Austenesque Audio Books:

  1. Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen, read by Emilia Fox (5 stars)
  2. Mr. Darcy’s Diary, by Maya Slater, read by David Rintoul (5 stars)
  3. Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy: The Last Man in the World (A Pride and Prejudice Variation), by Abigail Reynolds, read by Rachel E. Hurley (4 stars)

Top 3 Regency Romance Novels: 

  1. The Tutor’s Daughter, by Julie Klassen (5 stars)
  2. The Passion of the Purple Plumeria: A Pink Carnation Novel, by Lauren Willig (5 stars)
  3. Blackmoore: A Proper Romance, by Julianne Donaldson (5 stars)

Debut Austenesque Author:

  1. Diana J. Oaks, One Thread Pulled: The Dance with Mr. Darcy (5 stars)

Our thanks and congratulations go out to all of the authors and their publishers, whose endeavors entertained us so aptly. A very grateful thank you to all of our loyal readers.

The Austenprose review staff

Related posts

Laurel Ann Nattress © 2013, Austenprose.com

Happy Birthday Jane Austen: A Celebration with Recommendations of the Best Books in My Personal Library and a Giveaway!

*throws confetti in air* It’s Jane Austen’s 238th birthday today! Let the party begin by entering a chance to win a beautiful collector’s edition of The Complete Novels of Jane Austen, published by Race Point (2013). Details are listed below.

St Nicholas Church, Steventon Jane Austen Tour 2013

The festivities are especially poignant to me this year after visiting Jane Austen’s birthplace and home for twenty-five years on our tour of Jane Austen’s England last fall. Our stop at the former site of Steventon Rectory, and St. Nicholas Church, were my favorite sites along the tour. The original rectory was demolished in 1823, however the site is still viewable as an empty field where cattle now graze. Just up the road is St. Nicholas’ Church where Austen’s father, Rev. George Austen, was rector for forty years (1761-1800). The church is a small, simple, Norman building which was originally constructed around 1200. It has had a series of revisions over the 800 of years that it has been in existence, including the addition of the prominent spire in the mid nineteenth century.

Laurel Ann at St. Nicholas Church, Steventon during Jane Austen Tour 2013

Of all the many Austen related sites that we visited on our 10-day tour, my visit to St. Nicholas Church was the most moving. The neighborhood is very isolated and rural with large oak trees lining the narrow roads and other mature trees, including the huge 900-year-old yew tree, spanning 50 feet, at the front the church property. When we departed the coach, I was immediately struck by the quiet, unassuming, and uncommercial atmosphere we were privileged to enter. The church is surrounded on three sides by a graveyard and many of the local family names Jane mentions in her letters appear on the stones, including the Digweeds and LeFroys. The graves of her elder brother James Austen, who followed her father as rector of the parish, and his two wives are situated there; and inside is a plaque in their memory.

It would not be Jane Austen’s birthday if I did not talk about my favorite Austen books in my personal library. Here is a list of my top-ten favorite biographies, historical bio-ficts and nonfiction books that I have enjoyed over the years. Just click on the links to read a review or to learn more about them.

Image of the book cover of The Real Jane Austen, by Paula Byrne © 2013 HarperCollins

Jane Austen Biographies:

(the life of Jane Austen)

Image of the cover of The Lost memoirs of Jane Austen, by Syrie James

Jane Austen Bio-Fict:

(Jane Austen as a fictional character)

The entire Being a Jane Austen Mystery series by Stephanie Barron

Jane Austen, Her Life, Her Times, Her Novels by Janet Todd (2013)

Jane Austen-inspired:

(non-fiction)

The Complete Novels of Jane Austen by Race Point Publishing 2013

A GRAND GIVEAWAY

Enter a chance to win a hardcover copy of The Complete Novels of Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Northanger Abbey, Persuasion and Lady Susan) in one volume with a slip case. Just leave a comment with your favorite Jane Austen quote by 11:59 pm, Wednesday, December 25. 2013. Winner to be announced on Thursday, December 26, 2013. Shipment to US addresses only. Good luck to all!

Happy Birthday Jane!

Cover image of The Complete Novels of Jane Austen courtesy of Race Point Publishing © 2013; text Laurel Ann Nattress © 2013, Austenprose.com

My Top Picks for Jane Austen-inspired Holiday Gifts for 2013

Happy Holidays Janeites!

Tis the season to go shopping, and Janeite family and friends always need suggestions to fill the reticules, stockings, and gifts under the tree for those whose special interest is everything Austen. I have several categories to select from – and I would happily be the recipient of any of these fabulous items!

Ephemera

Jane Austen Book Marks by TheCastleOnTheHill

Jane Austen Book Marks from TheCastleOnTheHill

Created by London painter Jess Purser, this pack of six bookmarks, features a print of one of her Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice, paintings on vintage book pages. There are the five Bennet sisters and Mr. Darcy too. Can you pick out which sister is which?

Professionally printed onto silky smooth card stock at 350gsm weight they each measure 1.6″ (4cm) in width by 6.3″ (16cm) in height.

Your bookmarks will come packaged in a cello sleeve so they stay nice and safe for their journey to you.

Visit Jess at her Etsy Shop, CastleOnTheHill to order.

 Lizzy and Darcy note cards by Janet Taylor

Lizzy & Darcy note cards by Janet Taylor

From the very talented artist Janet Taylor, these beautiful notecards capture a unique moment in the 1995 miniseries, Pride and Prejudice. Select from a variety of sizes and images.

Visit Janet at her website J.T. Originals to order.

Books

Jane Austen, Her Life, Her Times, Her Novels by Janet Todd (2013)

Jane Austen: Her Life, Her Times, Her Novels, by Janet Todd

I discovered this enchanting book at The British Library bookshop during my trip to England last fall. It is packed full of great text from Austen scholar Janet Todd, images, pull out copies of original documents and other delights. Here is the publisher’s description:

Over the last 200 years, the novels of Jane Austen have been loved and celebrated across a diverse international readership. As a result, there is a bottomless appetite for detail about the woman behind the writing. Jane Austen traces her life and times; her relationships with family and friends; the attitudes and customs of the time that shaped her and were in turn shaped by her work; and the places where she lived, worked and set her novels, from rural Hampshire to fashionable Bath Spa. Chapters on each of her novels run throughout the book and place them in the context of her life. For such a renowned novelist, there is remarkably little direct material available, but this volume draws on archives for a truly insightful view.

Jane Austen: Her Life, Her Times, Her Novels, is currently available in the UK and in the US in April, but you can order it through Book Depository with free international shipping!

Pulp! The Classics: Pride and Prejudice 2013

Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen (Pulp! The Classics)

In this celebratory year of the bicentenary publication of Pride and Prejudice, there have been oodles of new covers of our cherished classic, but none reaches the unique irony, nor embraces the pop-culture frenzy that we have witnessed this year better than the Pulp! The Classics cover illustrated by David Mann. This series is a new imprint from Oldcastle Books that “gives the nation’s favourite classic novels original retro covers in a pulp fiction style – with a dash of wry humour. Redesigned and reset, using the original unabridged text from some of the best writers that have ever lived, Pulp! The Classics promises readers their favourite books with stunning and highly original jackets.” No kidding. Any Janeite will recognize actor Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy on the cover! Ha!

Pick up this perfect stocking stuffer at Amazon.com

 The Beau Monde by Hannah Greig (2013)

The Beau Monde: Fashionable Society in Georgian London,

by Hannah Greig 

*sigh* The title and cover had me at hello. For those who are not as impulsive as I am, here is the complete description from Oxford University Press:

Caricatured for extravagance, vanity, glamorous celebrity and, all too often, embroiled in scandal and gossip, 18th-century London’s fashionable society had a well-deserved reputation for frivolity. But to be fashionable in 1700s London meant more than simply being well dressed. Fashion denoted membership of a new type of society – the beau monde, a world where status was no longer determined by coronets and countryseats alone but by the more nebulous qualification of metropolitan ‘fashion’. Conspicuous consumption and display were crucial; the right address, the right dinner guests, the right possessions, the right jewels, the right seat at the opera.

The Beau Monde leads us on a tour of this exciting new world, from court and parliament to London’s parks, pleasure grounds, and private homes. From brash displays of diamond jewelry to the subtle complexities of political intrigue, we see how membership of the new elite was won, maintained – and sometimes lost. On the way, we meet a rich and colorful cast of characters, from the newly ennobled peer learning the ropes and the imposter trying to gain entry by means of clever fakery, to the exile banned for sexual indiscretion.

Above all, as the story unfolds, we learn that being a Fashionable was about far more than simply being ‘modish’. By the end of the century, it had become nothing less than the key to power and exclusivity in a changed world.

This new Regency-era nonfiction book topped my wish list at number one. I could not wait. I bought the digital edition. Buy the print edition if you want to be able to see the illustrations.

Take a peek inside this must read for Regency-era authors, history lovers and Jane Austen fans at Amazon.com.

Behind the Scenes at Downton Abbey by Emma Rowley (2013)

Behind the Scenes at Downton Abbey, by Emma Rowley

This book has nothing what-so-ever to do with Jane Austen, the Georgian or Regency eras, but what-the-heck, we love this period drama series and many other Janeites do too!

The fourth season of Downton Abbey will soon air this side of the pond on Masterpiece Classic PBS on January 5th. This is the perfect gift for those addicted to the Crawley family saga which spans Edwardian, WWI, and now the post war Roaring Twenties England. We live for Violet, the Dowager Countess of Grantham’s, acerbic comments. Don’t you? Here is the publisher’s description:

Gain unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to Downton Abbey in this official Season 4 tie-in book, complete with never-before-seen photos giving fans insight into the making of the runaway hit.

Expertly crafted with generous inside knowledge and facts, this book will delve into the inspiration behind the details seen on screen, the choice of locations, the music and much more. Step inside the props cupboard or the hair and make-up truck and catch a glimpse of the secret backstage world. In-depth interviews and exclusive photos give insight into the actors’ experiences on set as well as the celebrated creative team behind the award-winning drama. Straight from the director’s chair, this is the inside track on all aspects of the making of the show.

Visit Masterpiece Classic PBS for all the latest on the new season, and by all means, please buy the book at St. Martin’s Press.

Calendars

Jane Austen Mansfield Park Calendar (2013)

Jane Austen Mansfield Park Calendar 2014

from The Republic of Pemberley

My Austen year would not be complete without my calendar from the good folks at The Republic of Pemberley. This year they have two to choose from: the classic Jane Austen 2014 Rancor Vertical Wall Calendar and Jane Austen Mansfield Park Calendar 2014 in honor of the bicentenary of the publication. It is very hard to decide if you want to chortle over Austen’s witty quotes from her letters or spend the year in a love triangle between Fanny Price, Mary Crawford and Edmund Bertram. Decisions!

Miscellaneous

Elizabeth and Darcy doll ornaments

Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy Ornaments

from The Jane Austen Centre Gift Shop

I first discovered this adorable Mr. Darcy ornament during my visit to The British Library, when harkened from across the large gift shop floor I heard a cry of joy from fellow traveler, and Austenesque author Nancy Kelley, “MR. DARCY”. Tallyho! It was only my second hour in England, but it was the first thing I bought. I was delighted to find the matching Elizabeth at Winchester Cathedral gift shop, AND a Mr. Knightley and Emma at the Roman Bath’s gift shop. They all now proudly hang in pride of place, from my Jane Austen book case of course. Get your very own Mr. Darcy and Lizzy from The Jane Austen Centre online gift shop, though we wish they would spell Elizabeth’s name as Austen intended: Lizzy not Lizzie.

Happy Holidays to all, and may all your Austen wishes come true.

Cheers,

Laurel Ann

© 2013 Laurel Ann Nattress, Austenprose.com