You may have noticed that Jane Austen’s name has cropped up frequently this past week, and that is for a very good reason; July 18, 2017 is the 200th anniversary of her death. To commemorate the rather morbid occasion, the internet has come out in full force with articles all about Austen.
My cyber home away from home, Book Riot, is hosting its own Jane Austen Day. Though I didn’t write anything for it – I was too busy thinking about Becoming Jane – several of my fellow contributing authors put together great posts that I want to share. As someone who considers Austen’s books to be comfort reads, I could hardly do otherwise.
Some people associate Austen with tea, dainty ladies, and frippery, but Adiba Jaigirdar’s article argues that her writing was insightful, witty, and satirical.
Stories are grand not simply because of the narratives they tell but also because of the ways they can spark the imagination. For Jessica Pryde, Austen’s plots opened the window to other worlds. They also led her to fanfiction.
Sometimes all you really need in life is a little book swag. If you feel the urge to have an Austen related candle, necklace, or whiskey glass in your life, Rachel Manwill’s list has you covered. (Personally, I’m a fan of the “Keep Calm and Oh My Poor Nerves” t-shirt, but alas, it is no longer available.)
Would you like to read Austen in space? Or perhaps you’d prefer one of the Austen books set in a summer theater program. Amy Diegelman has tracked down 5 modern young adult retellings of Jane Austen books. I’m all for it.
If you are more of a visual creature, these 13 TV and film adaptations related to Jane Austen may be right up your alley. (Warning: a few of them may make you weep.)
And if you haven’t read much of Austen but want a place to start, my personal top five books by her are, in a very particular order:
2. Pride and Prejudice
3. Mansfield Park
4. Northanger Abbey
5. Sense and Sensibility
I suspect that wars have been started over smaller things than this listing, but sometimes half the fun of books is arguing over which ones are the best.
With that, happy reading!