The Year In Books ~ Persuasion

Friday, 4 July 2014

This month's choice is Persuasion by Jane Austen. Quite, quite different from last month's choice with its rich descriptive language and unstructured plot. With Jane Austen we have lots of plot, dialogue and character and very delightful it is. I have cheated a little by listening to it first, read by the excellent Juliet Stevenson who can do no wrong when it comes reading aloud. I am looking forward to a leisurely and attentive reading of this lovely new edition* from Vintage Classics, and yes I will be adding the others to my collection. This edition comes with an introduction by Lynne Truss which is well worth reading. She talks very entertainingly about television adaptations of Austen and comes to the same conclusion as I do regarding the two most recent adaptations of Persuasion. If you want faithfulness to the book then this is the one to watch, not this one although the actors are good in both and Rupert Penry Jones is rather pretty.



The best bit

I must say how much I am enjoying choosing a book each month and writing a little about it. I do thank Laura for instigating The Year In Books, I think it is something I will continue next year.

*Although pretty, compact and affordable the paper quality isn't the best.



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24 comments:

  1. I agree with you regarding Juliet Stevenson. I've just finished listening to Apple Tree Yard, read by Juliet. She was a perfect match to the storyline and wonderful to listen to on the long drive home.

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    1. I listened to a sample of that, was very tempted.

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    2. Her reading of Chocolat is superb.

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  2. Anonymous5:36 pm BST

    Oh I so agree with you: even though Penry Jones' acting is very good you cannot beat the Root/Hinds version. I'm off to look more closely at the audiobook link (my finger might slip on the "basket" button...). And yes, my favourite bit too!
    Alice A

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  3. Great review I can't wait to try it.
    ~Sophia
    http://plaidismyfavouritecolour.blogspot.com/

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  4. I love Jane Austen (lots of my students say she's their favourite English writer, which I think is interesting) but haven't read this one. On my list it goes.

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  5. I am ashamed to admit that I have not read any Jane Austen. I blame my Swiss upbringing and submersion in German literature. I do love audio books and might check if the version read by Juliet Stevenson is available through Audible. The monthly choosing of a book for the year of books is turning into a pleasant ritual, and I love reading about everybody else's choices, I have read books I might never have chosen before. Have a lovely weekend.

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    1. It is available through audible -that's how I got it.

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    2. If you click Juliet Stevenson's name in my post you'll land on the audible link.

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  6. I agree. Amanda Root is so believable as Anne. One of my all time favourites.

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  7. My favourite Jane Austen book, and the Juliet Stevenson audiobook (unabridged, came on the interminable air journey to Australia with me, saved me from going quite mad with the tedium of it all) is superb.

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  8. Oops, meant to add that on the journey back, I watched the Root/Hinds film of the book, which was pretty good too. Haven't seen any others, having been so appalled by many film adaptations/murdering of other Austen novels.....

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    1. The dreadful version of Mansfield Park with Billie Piper (so miscast) springs to mind. The Firth and Ehle P&P was faithful to the book and much better than the Bronte-ish film version with Keira Knightley.

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  9. I'm ashamed to admit I have never read/heard/nor seen Persuasion... althugh after reading your post and subsequent comments I might be "persuaded" to listen to the Juliet Stevenson version

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  10. Love Persuasion! In fact, I just re-read it a few weeks ago.

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  11. I'm a big fan of Juliet Stevenson as well. Jane Austen too. It's a good match. I never get tired of either.

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  12. Was given the audio version last month so saving it for my next long drive.
    Her reading of Wuthering Heights, from Penguin Classics, was wonderful.
    Gorgeous book cover.

    Reading My Cousin Rachel (Daphne du Maurier) and can't put it down.

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  13. Anonymous10:32 am BST

    'You pierce my soul.' One of my all-time favourite lines. I almost swooned the first time I read that in my teens (many moons ago). I literally sit on the edge of my seat whenever I watch an adaptation of Persuasion, waiting for THAT line. Beautiful, poignant... who wouldn't want those words said to them?

    On a completely different, down-to-earth note. Many months ago you blogged about starting a new housework routine, with different chores for each day and adding the odd larger job in amongst them. I found this most inspiring and duly set up my own routine. What I would like to know Sue, if you don't mind answering (entirely up to you, obviously) is if your routine lasted longer than mine. In my case it really was good intentions but, goddamn it, life got in the way. Husband's coming home soon after a few months abroad for a job - suppose I'd better clear the cobwebs before then.
    Kim Daltrey - chris.daltrey@hotmail.co.uk

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    1. Oh yes, you mean this post. Kim, I have kept to the daily part of my routine, and the weekly laundry routine is burnt into my soul, but the less frequent tasks are done randomly and I honestly can't remember the last time I washed the windows. The cake eating and wine drinking are still going strong though.

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  14. Persuasion is the only Jane Austen novel I have not read. It is currently on my queue, however, and I think reading this post has bumped it up a few places.

    Slán go fóill,
    Giselle

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  15. One of my favourite Jane's! And I do so agree about the adaptations - I could watch it every day - and as for that passage......swoon!!

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  16. I've joined in too with The Year in Books and linked back to your blog, Sue and Laura's too. I agree with Niki's comment above re "My Cousin Rachel", full of suspense and very atmospheric. It's one of those books that stays with you long after you've finished it, I loved it.

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    1. I might well take My Cousin Rachel on holiday to Cornwall with me.

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  17. One of my favorite books! I listen to the very same audio book recently and agree that Juliet Stevenson is fabulous!

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