Monday, August 23, 2010

Sanditon &c by Jane Austen

Title: Sanditon, The Watsons & Lady Susan
Author: Jane Austen
Category: Fiction

Sanditon, The Watsons & Lady Susan is a collection of Jane Austen's unfinished works.

Sanditon is the least complete of the three, and as such is rather difficult to form an opinion on. It is based around the seaside town of Sanditon and the locals' attempts to make it a popular attraction for those sickly folks seeking the healing remedies of the ocean.

The Watsons tells the story of widowed Mr Watson and his young daughters as they seek love and fortune. Mr Watson's youngest daughter, Emma, is sent back into her father's care at the age of 19 after having been raised and educated by a wealthy Aunt, and this is where the story begins. After she attends a local ball she becomes the talk of the town and earns the admiration of many wealthy local men.

Lady Susan is the most complete of the three stories and is an episotolary novel (in the form of letters) about the flirtatious escapades of a wealthy young widow as she hunts down a new husband and creates for herself a questionable reputation in the process. Self-absorbed, petty, cruel and vain, Lady Susan is not one of Jane Austen's more likeable characters, but the story is most enjoyable.

Overall an easy read: 3 out of 5 stars.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Have you seen the ad everyone is talking about?

I dont usually upload political spin here, but we have a Federal election campaign in full swing and voting takes place this Saturday (although this little politics-nerd has already voted). This advert was aired on Gruen Nation last Wednesday, 11 August, as part of their segment 'The Pitch', and since then the advertising company who produced it has granted permission for The Greens to use it. However, the ABC have been unable to permit The Greens to show it on television, although it can be shared online.

After suffering the barrage of terribly awful election campaign adverts from the other political parties and their cronies for the past month, this non-ad for The Greens is a breath of fresh air.

Why do I like this ad? --> I like it because it doesnt make an attack on any other political party or politician. Rather, it appeals to people's sensibilities by simply showing what The Greens are about. It's emotive and it's clever. It'd be nice if all election campaign ads were the same.

Happy voting, fellow Aussies!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Jane Austen's Selected Letters

Title: Selected Letters (Oxford World's Classics)
Author: Jane Austen (Introduction by Vivien Jones)
Category: Non-fiction, Biography

"Little Matters they are to be sure, but highly important."
- Jane Austen, in a letter to her sister Cassandra, Dec 1808

Jane Austen's Selected Letters are all about the "little matters", yet they provide a fascinating insight into her life. She was a gossip, always ready and eager to share the latest news of her acquaintances with others, especially her sister Cassandra. In one letter she even joked how she was so tired of Cassandra "knowing nobody" and having little gossip to provide in return.

Jane Austen's letters reveal a preoccupation with clothes and fashion, social functions and expectations, family events, politics, reading, and - of course - her novels. Such private correspondence reveals just how clever and astute Jane Austen was, and how much of a tragedy it is that she died so young and so unexpectedly.

Recommended to all true Austenites and those interested in the daily lives of women in Georgian England.

5 out of 5 stars.

Sunday, August 1, 2010