This month we are excited to partner with Literati Club just in time for Valentine’s Day. Enter to win this Pride and Prejudice infinity scarf and $50 in eNotes Homework Help credit! This scarf is a perfect gift for a certain special someone this February 14th–even if that special someone is yourself…
On eNotes Homework Help, you can ask any question about any subject, and our specialized Educators will provide you with fast and thorough answers to help you learn and ace your assignments. $50 in credit gets you up to five questions to ask whenever you need them.
Giveaway entries are accepted until February 7, 2016 at 11:59pm PST. We will notify the randomly selected winner February 8. Simply click the link below to enter (please note: you must be a U.S. resident to enter). If you have any questions please post a comment below, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Good luck!
We love our moms, and they love us!
But… more often than not in literature, we see somewhat, er, nontraditional relationships between mothers and their children.
Some of these relationships are too good (or too bad?) not to comment on, so when we started brainstorming our Mother’s Day post, we kept coming back to the idea of the classic Hallmark card with a little twist. Below you’ll find the Mother’s Day card imaginings of famed literary mother-child relationships.
A little bit snarky, and a little bit sweet, we think you’ll find these a real treat. Continue Reading ›
Who hasn’t read a 1,488 page epic of the French Revolution and thought, there should really be a version of this for infants. Nobody. Finally, two brothers are filling the void of classic literature for children under the age of 3. Okay, all mockery aside this is actually seriously cute. (So cute I had to borrow the felt versions of Darcy and Bingley for the cover of our latest Kindle Fire competition.) Meet “Cozy Classics”:
Brothers Jack and Holman Wang teamed up in 2012 to create Cozy Classics, an infant primer board-book series that adapts classic novels into twelve simple, words that appear alongside photographs of handmade figurines. The brothers create the characters, sets, and props themselves through the painstaking process of needle-felting, a handcraft that involves the shaping of woolen fibers with a barbed needle. Each figure takes between eighteen and twenty-five hours to create. The first two titles—Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick and Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice—were released this past November by Vancouver-based Simply Read Books; the next release, a cozy take on Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables, is forthcoming in April.
Here’s a glimpse of each of Cozy Classics’ titles so far, every page accompanied by its child-friendly word. Though the series may be developed for children, I have to say these might be too adorable (and adultly ironic) not to pick up for myself. Look for them in an Urban Outfitters near you soon.
“I want to tell you that I have got my own darling child from London.”
These are the words Jane Austen wrote to her sister Cassandra 200 years ago, on January 29th, 1813. And the “darling child” she spoke of? None other than her firstborn novel, of course–Pride & Prejudice.
The novel was published just a day before, after many years of submissions to and rejections by various London publishers. Austen had completed the manuscript with its original title of “First Impressions” in 1797. From there, so many prospective publishers declined to even see the work that P&P underwent 14 years of heavy editing to become what it is today. At last, the editor Thomas Egerton bought the book for a meager £110, the equivalent of just $172 today.
Thankfully, as it is a truth universally acknowledged, Pride & Prejudice went on to become not only the “fashionable novel” of its time, but one of the most beloved (and borrowed) stories of English literature. 200 years on, it inspires everything from its explicit spin-offs (Death at Pemberley, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, etc), to the more subtly taken chick-lit and movie plots of today. And now, in the week of this milestone anniversary, a slew of articles dedicated to all things Austenesque. So feast your eyes on these literary nibbles, Darcy lovers:
Here’s another interesting couple of tidbits I came across today… Ever wondered what Austen’s contemporaries and fellow authors thought of her self-confessed “light, and bright, and sparkling” novel? It seems that Charlotte Brontë was none too impressed, though surprisingly it was on account of the novel’s lack of a characteristic landscape more than anything else:
Charlotte Brontë, in a letter to [the critic] Lewes, wrote that Pride and Prejudice was a disappointment, “a carefully fenced, highly cultivated garden, with neat borders and delicate flowers; but … no open country, no fresh air, no blue hill, no bonny beck.”
Meanwhile, in 1937 the poet W.H. Auden cheekily mused that Austen was far too experienced for a gentlewoman of her time and social standing:
You could not shock her more than she shocks me,
Beside her Joyce seems innocent as grass.
It makes me most uncomfortable to see
An English spinster of the middle class
Describe the amorous effects of ‘brass’,
Reveal so frankly and with such sobriety
The economic basis of society.
So there you have it, a few juicy details surrounding by far the greatest romance plot in British literature. But if you’d like to learn more, there are plenty of eNotes study guides for, you know, all that important academic stuff:
and much more on enotes.com!
Be on the lookout for ways to celebrate the anniversary in your area. With this many Austenites around the globe, there has got to be a Meryton ball somewhere nearby.
How will you celebrate 200 years of P&P?
Sometimes the opening sentence of a novel comes down on you like the safety bar on a roller coaster. That first line locks you in; you tingle with excitement, anticipating the ride that is to come. Here are ten of the most engaging lines that begin works of fiction, some classics, some new, some you may never have heard of, but all captivating:
1. It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife. —Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
2. Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way. —Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina
3. It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen. —George Orwell, 1984
4. “To start with, look at all the books.” Jeffrey Eugenides, The Marriage Plot
5. “They met at the museum to end it.” – Johnathan Lethem, You Don’t Love Me Yet
6. “Ours is essentially a tragic age, so we refuse to take it tragically.” D.H. Lawrence, Lady Chatterley’s Lover
7. “I did two things on my seventy-fifth birthday.” John Scalzi, Old Man’s War
8. “It was a queer, sultry summer, the summer they electrocuted the Rosenbergs, and I didn’t know what I was doing in New York. – Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
9. “She was so deeply imbedded in my consciousness that for the first year of school I seem to have believed that each of my teachers was my mother in disguise.” Philip Roth, Portnoy’s Complaint
10. “There was a boy called Eustace Clarence Scrubb, and he almost deserved it.” C.S. Lewis, Voyage of the Dawn Treader
*Note: Post title is from Kurt Vonnegut’s classic, Slaughterhouse-Five