Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Liebster Award

I've been awarded by Charity at Austenitis and Abby at Newly Impassioned Soul with the....

Thank you both very much! I am quite pleased to have made your list!
Charity looked up 'liebster' and found out that it meant 'dearest' in German. That's such a nice Jane Austenish word! Like: "I meant something less mournful, dearest!" Okay, yes, that's not actually from a book it's from the 1995 Sense and Sensibility...but it still applies. ;-)

Well, dearest bloggers, I am supposed to choose 5 blogs to award. Now I don't follow very many blogs, so if I follow yours, that means I really like it. =) And I sometimes read blogs that I don't follow as well.
So, the 5 I chose I'm listing in alphabetical order according to blog names...

Charity at:

"Missie" at:


Maria Elisabeth at:
Miss Georgiana Darcy

Abby at:
Newly Impassioned Soul

Jessica at:
Our Cottage in the Heartland
It was hard for me to decide between Austenitis and Elegance of Fashion...with either one, I'd be awarding them a 3rd time. I finally decided on Austenitis because this particular blog award is supposed to be for blogs with less than 200 followers, to spread the word about smaller blogs. Elegance of Fashion has more followers than Austenitis, so that's why I chose the latter.

And Miss Laurie, it's great that Old-fashioned Charm reached 200 followers but it's too bad I couldn't award you! =)

So, here's what you're supposed to do if you were awarded:

1. Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them.

2. Give the Liebster Blog Award to five bloggers and comment on their blogs, letting them know they got it. 

3. Copy and paste the award to your blog.
     It's at the top of the blog

4. Have faith your followers will spread the love to other bloggers.

5. Have blogging fun!


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Quotes from Persuasion

“If there is anything disagreeable going on, men are always sure to get out of it.” – Mary Musgrove

“A few months hence, and the room now so deserted, occupied by her silent, pensive self, might be filled again with all that was happy and gay, all that was glowing and bright in prosperous love, all that was most unlike Anne Elliot!”

“One man’s ways may be as good as another’s, but we all like our own best.” – Admiral Croft

Anne: My idea of good company, Mr. Elliot, is the company of clever, well-informed people, who have a great deal of conversation; that is what I call good company.
William Elliot: You are mistaken, that is not good company, that is the best.

“[M]y sore-throats, you know, are always worse than anybody’s.” – Mary

“A man does not recover from such a devotion of the heart to such a woman!—--He ought not----he does not.” – Captain Wentworth

“One does not love a place the less for having suffered in it, unless it has been all suffering, nothing but suffering.” – Anne

“Your countenance perfectly informs me that you were in company last night with the person whom you think the most agreeable in the world, the person who interests you at this present time, more than all the rest of the world put together.” – Mrs. Smith

“What wild imaginations one forms, where dear self is concerned! How sure to be mistaken!” – Anne

“Men have had every advantage of us in telling their own story. Education has been theirs in so much higher a degree; the pen has been in their hands. I will not allow books to prove anything.” – Anne

“All the privilege I claim for my own sex (it is not a very enviable one: you need not covet it) is that of loving longest, when existence or when hope is gone.” – Anne

“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.” – Part of Captain Wentworth’s letter

Friday, August 26, 2011

"The Ultimate Book Bash" questions

Charity at Austenitis is hosting:
Come to my Book Bash!

Here are my answers to the questions. Sorry there aren't any pictures - I'm really short on time.

1.       Name three books you love.
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, Emma by Jane Austen, A Gown of Spanish Lace by Janette Oke

2.       Name two books you enjoy, but that most people probably haven't heard of.
The School Story by Andrew Clements, Fifteen by Beverly Cleary

3.       Name three series you love.
My favorite definitely used to be the Mandie series by Lois G. Leppard; Samantha & Kit American Girl books (does that count as one?), Love Comes Softly series by Janette Oke.

4.       Name three authors you love!
Jane Austen, Janette Oke, Elizabeth Gaskell (even though I haven’t read a whole book by her yet, I like her stories)

5.       How about three adventures or mysteries?
Running Out of Time by Margaret P. Haddix. Sorry, I can’t think of 3.

6.       Three non-fiction?
The Jane Austen Handbook by Margaret C. Sullivan, Jane Austen for Dummies, Jane Austen’s Letters (okay, that’s just the first three that came to my mind. Haha)

7.       Nancy Drew or Hardy Boys? Which book in your favorite set is your favorite?
Nancy Drew. Probably The Mystery at Lilac Inn or The Clue of the Broken Locket, but then I haven’t read an excessive amount of those.

8.       Narnia or Harry Potter? Name your favorite from the series you like best.
Really neither, but definitely NOT Harry Potter. As far as Narnia goes, I’ve only read about half of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe a pretty long time ago.

9.       A cookbook or a how-to-sew book?
Well, it depends on what I’m cooking and what I’m sewing. But probably sewing…that has the most interesting pictures. ;-)

10.   Historical fiction or fantasy? Name three books you like from the genre you chose.
Historical fiction! Um…A Gown of Spanish Lace by Janette Oke, When Calls the Heart by the same, A School of Her Own by Arleta Richardson. (All three of those are about teachers, my favorite historical fiction subject.)

11.   Hardcover or softcover?
That depends on whether it makes it easier or harder to hold, but maybe hardcover.

12.   Louisa May Alcott or Lucy Maud Montgomery? Name your favorite book by the author you chose.
I suppose I must say Lucy Maud Montgomery since I have finished some of her books. Probably Anne of Green Gables. (I also really like Anne of Avonlea and Anne of the Island.)
13.   Jane Austen or Charlotte Bronte? Name your favorite book by the author you chose.
Jane Austen!!!!!!! What, just one? Well, Pride and Prejudice.

14.   Would you rather read historical fiction about the sinking of the Titanic, or the Civil War?
Probably the Civil War. That has a better ending. :-)

15.   What's your favorite classic? Why?
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. Yes, this is the 3rd time I mentioned that book.
   It has such variety in it, so many interesting characters, and is – as Jane Austen cheerfully observed – ‘light, bright, and sparkling.’ It’s so fun to read; when I pick it up it never fails to put a smile on my face. It’s so easy to laugh when reading Pride and Prejudice! Oh yes, and then of course we have Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy. With such a heroine and hero, how could it fail to be delightful?

16.   Little Women or A Little Princess?
I’ve never actually finished either book (shocking, I know), but probably Little Women.

17.   What's your favorite time period to read about?
That depends on the setting. If it’s in England, probably the early 1800s (Regency period…surprise!) and if in America, usually I like mid-late 1800s.

18.   G. A. Henty, J. R. R. Tolkien, or Charles Dickens? What's your favorite book or series by the author you chose?
Charles Dickens. I haven’t actually read any of his books, but Little Dorrit might be my favorite story. (I might never read it though…it is excessively long!) I’m going to be reading A Tale of Two Cities for school.

19.   Ivanhoe or Ben-Hur?
I actually haven’t read either. Am I very ill-educated?

20.   Name three books everyone should read.
The Bible, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (4th time!), and another Jane Austen of their choice.

21.   Name two books we wouldn't have expected you to enjoy.
I really have no idea. What wouldn’t you expect me to enjoy? Maybe one would be Baby Island by Carol Ryrie Brink.

22.   Name three books that have good movies to go with them.
I do hope you will forgive me for altering this question…but I’m going to name 3 authors that have good movies to go with some of their books:
Jane Austen, Elizabeth Gaskell, Charles Dickens

23.   Any books coming out soon that you're looking forward to?
The Fiddler by Beverly Lewis

24.   Name two authors you'd like to talk to.
Jane Austen (unfortunately impossible), Jamie Langston Turner (or someone else who’s a Christian and mentions Jane Austen in her book[s]. hehe)

25.   Science fiction or a fairy tale?
Probably fairy tale, but it depends on what kind.

26.   A classic book you haven't read is...?
Lots! Let’s see…Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë.

27.   Shakespeare or George Bernard Shaw (who wrote Pygmalion)?
Shakespeare, I would suppose.

28.   Name a movie (or two) where it's actually better than the book.
Mary Poppins (ugh! And I don’t even like the movie, but the book…), and probably any fairy-tale turned Disney (namely Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty).

29.   Where is your favorite place to read?
My bed. However, if I could read anywhere I wanted, it would be a neat old attic or a relaxing chair in a beautiful garden.

30.   What are your favorite quotes from books?
“The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerable stupid.” – Henry Tilney, Northanger Abbey
“The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!” –Marianne Dashwood, Sense and Sensibility
“For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors, and laugh at them in our turn?” –Mr. Bennet, Pride and Prejudice

31.   What book would you most like to see made into a movie?
That is a very hard decision. If we’re talking about something that’s already been made into a movie but needs a different one, I’d say Mansfield Park and Northanger Abbey. But I would love to see movies of Running Out of Time and A Gown of Spanish Lace, if they are faithful to the books. Oh and also Jane Austen’s minor works would be great. =D

32.   What book character do you identify the most with?
I identify with Elizabeth Bennet, Marianne Dashwood, and Catherine Morland all in different ways. ;-)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Introducing: Pages

I've just added the 'pages' element to my blog. It's at the top of my sidebar, under 'followers. Here are the sections I have so far:

"Jane Austen's works: a book by book study"
   This is what I've generally been doing with my blog, taking one book at a time and doing a series of posts about it. This page keeps track of what I've posted. Also when I have a post connected with one of the books but it wasn't really in the "section", I put that over to the right.

"Blog Buttons"
   I don't know about you, but when people have different blog buttons, I like to switch them around every so often for something new. I only have 2 so far, but I hope to add more in the future.
                 Here's my new blog button:
Regency Delight ~Jane Austen, etc.~

And my favorite:
"Old-fashioned Movies"
   Here I list the movies I've seen and can recommend that are from books by Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, Elizabeth Gaskell, and Charlotte Bronte; and then various other movies I like & recommend.
   Each DVD picture is a link to a trailer - unless I couldn't find a trailer, in which case it goes to some other information about the movie. If I've done a review about the movie, I have a link to that as well.
Please let me know if you happen to see any mistakes.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Persuasion: The Movies

Click here for the summary of the actual story

2007, ITV (BBC)
I’ve seen a lot of different opinions about this movie – and for me, there are some things I really like, and some things I don’t like. Some of the things I dislike: Anne’s hair is very annoying the whole time, so that it’s actually distracting. The camera work is a little odd, and the music seems spacey and doesn’t quite go. The movie was too short; they rushed through everything and stuffed things together so that some things were taken out of context almost. There were a few things added in just for the sake of drama (such as Anne thinking – because of a letter written by Charles Musgrove – that Captain Wentworth and Louisa are engaged, which was totally made up.) Probably the biggest, at least the most objected to by viewers, was the ending where Anne is running from place to place in Bath trying to find Captain Wentworth, after Captain Harville gives her the letter, which isn’t at all how it happened in the book; but at least the letter was in there and they didn’t change it much. The part at the very end with Kellynch was made up, too.
          Okay, now for some things I did like. Anne kept a journal, and a lot of the things she wrote in it came directly out of Jane Austen’s novel, only made first person. It was great to know what Anne was thinking. I liked Captain Wentworth pretty well; nice and melancholic. In general it gave me a feeling of elegance which – I’m comparing a little too early here – the 1995 version did not. I could sympathize easily with Anne. And is the fact that Anne played Moonlight Sonata allowed to count as a point for this version? ;-)
Miss Anne Elliot: Sally Hawkins
Captain Wentworth: Rupert Penry-Jones
Length: about 1 ½ hours

1995, Sony Classics/Masterpiece Theatre
As with the version previously mentioned, there are things I like about this one, and things I dislike. The main drawback to me was the person chosen for Captain Wentworth, who, to me, is quite unappealing in looks and manners, and is not how I would imagine him to act or speak. But I did like Anne quite well. There was something that bugged me about its Elizabeth and Lady Russell. There were some things very similar to the book, but then they did things like changing some character’s first names – Henry Hayter instead of Charles Hayter, and Phoebe instead of Fanny Harville (they might have even changed her last name to Hubble, if I remember it right). At the end another war was beginning, and I don’t think there was supposed to be another war in the book. I thought the movie was a bit slow-moving in some spots, and some of the music didn’t go. However, in general it was pretty close to the book, and of course I admire that.
Anne: Amanda Root
Wentworth: Ciaran Hinds
Length: about 1 hr. 45 min.

1995 & 2007 comparison
Okay, here I’m going to insert a partial and (hopefully) short comparison, because I am always trying to decide which one I like better. I like them both in different ways, and I prefer some parts of each to the other one.
1995: Everyone complaining to Anne about everyone else was spot on. Anne improved in looks as the movie went on, which was like in the book. A lot of things that took place in Bath were much closer to the book – including the part where Anne gets the letter. This movie seemed more detailed in general.
2007: I thought the 1995 one started out too slowly, but then this one rushed through everything too much. As I mentioned above, I thought it was a really good idea to have Anne keep a journal so the viewer can know what she’s thinking, as if they were reading the book. I liked the settings (houses, scenery and so forth), hair, and costuming better in general. I liked Louisa’s fall better; in the 1995 version, they did a slow-motion thing while she was falling, which I thought really took away from the moment. It was supposed to happen very suddenly. Character representations in this version I preferred to the 1995 version are: Captain Wentworth, Louisa and Henrietta Musgrove, Sir Walter Elliot, Mrs. Clay, Lady Russell, and Mrs. Smith (although she wasn’t supposed to be able to walk in the book, and she did on here).
(With Mary [Elliot] Musgrove, I really liked them both; they each had a different technique for being Mary, and I really can’t decide which I like better. As for Elizabeth Elliot, my favorite is actually probably from the 1971 mini-series.)
A couple things they both did:
          A whole bunch was missing with the story of Mr. Elliot, and likewise the story of Mrs. Smith. Mrs. Smith was barely touched upon in both these movies; she had a much bigger role in the book. The stuff about Mr. Elliot was confusing because so little was explained, but I think the 2007 version probably hit closer to the mark.
          The concert was, in both, not quite like the book, although the 1995 one got closer. They both had Anne talk to Captain Wentworth before they went into the concert room (which happened in the book), but in the book Anne and Capt. Wentworth have some conversation during the concert before he decides to leave and tells her goodbye. She gently tries to encourage him to stay, but he just walks out. In both the movies, she ran after him and persists in trying to get him to stay. (She follows him all the way out into the hall in the 2007 version!)
          Have you ever heard about the cancelled chapters in Persuasion? Jane Austen decided to write the last couple chapters differently before she published the book, but the other ones were saved. In the cancelled chapters, Admiral Croft, assuming along with everyone else that Anne and Mr. Elliot are to marry, asks Captain Wentworth (for some reason) to ask her if she’d like the Crofts to give up their lease of Kellynch Hall. After Anne tells Captain Wentworth that there is no truth in the gossip, they come to an understanding and renew their engagement. The funny thing is, both these movies took the cancelled chapters and stuck them in, along with the real ending where Captain Wentworth writes a letter to Anne. And in both of them, Captain Wentworth meets with Anne alone in a room, and Lady Russell interrupts them, and he leaves. Looks to me like the 2007 version did a little copying there… but it could be coincidence.

Persuasion 1971 (BBC)
As always for these mini-series from the 70s and 80s, it is very slow-moving and seems like a play because of the filming, acting and lack of music, but they do give you the advantage of a more complete story. I only have a few comments to make: the actress who did Anne was around 38. The people who play Jane Austen heroines are almost always older than the character is supposed to be, but I think Anne Elliot, the oldest heroine (27), should be an exception. 25-30 would probably be good, but 38? Wow.
Near the beginning Anne kept saying it was ‘seven years’ since Captain Wentworth was there, which annoyed me a bit. The book said “more than seven,” and it’s generally referred to as 8: 1806-1814, Anne’s age 19-27. Later on in the book, Captain Wentworth says ‘eight years and a half.’ Couldn’t she at least have said ‘almost eight’?
The costumes are never spectacular in these, but all the guys had bow-ties! I’ve never seen bowties in Jane Austen movies, it’s always cravats.
Compared to the other two movies, I liked the Elizabeth from this one the best.
Anne: Ann Firbank
Wentworth: Bryan Marshall
Length: 3 hr. 45 min.

My favorite
Do you know, I still can’t decide. Buuuut, in general, I think I enjoy watching the one from 2007 most, and if I didn’t care about accuracy to the book, it wouldn’t be a very hard decision. In any case, I like its trailer better than 1995’s, so that’s the one I’m going to put here:

This link will take you to a similar but longer trailer.

Which is your favorite? (Feel free to comment as well!)
Which is your favorite version of Persuasion?
1971 (Ann Firbank)
1995 (Amanda Root)
2007 (Sally Hawkins) free polls

  Now that I’ve read the book I can understand why Persuasion tied for second with Northanger Abbey on my poll about which Jane Austen novel most needed another movie. When I think how much someone could do with this novel!!

Here are a few ideas I had:
--It could begin in 1806, when Anne and Captain Wentworth first meet each other, and then the engagement is broken. Oh, the drama! And then there could be a few scenes for the years in-between, with things happening like Mr. Elliot slighting Sir Walter and Elizabeth, James Benwick’s relationship with Fanny Harville, and other things that normally have to be explained later.
--I’d like to see more things from other people’s point of view, or what’s going on with them when their somewhere else – like when Captain Wentworth goes to visit his brother Edward, and most particularly when Louisa is recovering at Lyme, and she and James Benwick form an attachment. I always dislike how after Louisa’s fall we never see her again! More about Henrietta and Charles Hayter might be interesting, too.
--I think it would be fun for the three engaged couples (Anne and Wentworth, Louisa and Benwick, Henrietta and Charles Hayter) to somehow be all shown together near the end. (I remember in the A&E version of Emma, Emma & Knightley, Jane & Frank, and Harriet & Robert were all shown dancing at the end and I thought that was cute.)
--Lastly, I think a splendid addition would be to have an alternate ending like I’ve heard some movies have. You watch the movie with the main one, but then you can watch the other one and decide which you like better. I say this, because Jane Austen wrote an alternate ending – the cancelled chapters. That way, instead of trying to stick it in where it doesn’t belong, it can be just like reading the cancelled chapters after the real ending, which is fun.

   So, instead of a less-than-two-hour-movie, we can have a wonderfully complex mini-series! Another task for BBC and perhaps screenwriter Sandy Welch (Emma [2009], North & South, Our Mutual Friend). That, and Mansfield Park; and someone needs to do another Northanger Abbey! But those are beside the point.
   What do you think?

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The Jane Austen Advice Column

Yesterday for Jane Austen Week at Elegance of Fashion, Miss Bennet presented a new way we can all have part of the fun – by writing advice column letters from a non-Jane Austen character, and have one of the JA characters answer it. I’m actually having two Jane Austen characters answer it; you will see why when you come to it.

(From Esther Summerson of Bleak House by Charles Dickens)
Dear Jane Austen Advise Column,
          Some time ago I met a man whom I came to care very much about; and I believe that he returned my feelings. Although we are unequal in station and – most importantly to his family – birth, we are perfectly equal, and very well matched it seems, in understanding and principle.
          His profession required him to leave and he was not sure when he would return. During his absence I suffered a severe illness which altered my appearance significantly. I never had thought my face would be my fortune, but then I was quite sure of it.
          I have since received an offer of marriage from my guardian, who is perhaps three times my age. Although I could not help acknowledging myself to be in love with the other gentleman in question, the match was impossible; and my guardian is a man I admire and respect very much: he is a true gentleman, and everything that is kind, good, and selfless. I am sincerely attached to him, and I believe that I could come to feel for him as a wife should for her husband.
          Now I come to the point: the other gentleman has returned recently. My altered looks has done nothing to alter his opinion of me, and I fear that he may be deeply attached to me; and although I cannot help desiring his company, I am afraid of a declaration, perhaps a proposal—my heart tells me so, although my rationality insists that I should not expect it.
          What should I do if it were to happen? Any way I turn I will be hurting somebody I love – and either way might regret my decision – but I am determined that I should not go back on my promise. Please do advise me as to the best course of action.
                                                                                  Thank you,

(The answers are from the two oldest Dashwood sisters in Sense and Sensibility. I meant them to have been written before Marianne finds out about Willoughby, but after Elinor finds out about Edward.)

Dear Esther,
          It is impossible for me to advise you without first admonishing you. What can you have been thinking of, accepting the proposal of a man you do not love, and one who is more than old enough to be your father? It is too ridiculous! At such a time of life, I should think it impossible for him to really be in love with you; he must have outlived every sensation of the kind. The marriage would be only a compact of convenience, and in my eyes that is no marriage at all.
          Now, as to what you should do. Leave rationality behind in matters of romance, and let your heart guide you! You must not make the choice of a marriage that will make you unhappy for the rest of your life, as it will without question. If the old gentleman is as selfless as you say, he will understand when you tell him you have thought the better of the engagement. If he does care about you, he will not wish to bring you into an unhappy marriage.
          The man you love has shewn true constancy, and I honour him for it. If he proposes to you, as I am convinced he will, you must accept; there is nothing else to be done, if you really love him!
                                                                             Yours &c.,

Dear Esther,
          Let me first say how sorry I am that you find yourself in such a painful situation, and that I understand it better than I would like to. Such unexpected things happen in life, and we can do nothing to prevent them; we can only respond to them with prudence.
          I think you are right to keep your promise to your guardian. Although it will cause pain to both you and the other gentleman, keeping one’s word is always the right thing to do. It seems to me that you and I would think alike on many matters; you are probably already trying to gently discourage his interest in you.
          I am sure this gentleman will honour you for doing the right thing and keeping your promise, even when your heart is trying to lead you otherwise.
         Such gentlemen as your guardian are not common, and since you do respect and care for him, I think that you will by no means be unhappy.                                            
          I hope everything will end as well for you all as it possibly can.

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