Really fascinating, right? There's some snark in there that makes me feel as if Ms Schuessler might be one.of.us. ;)
Benjamin Disraeli read “Pride and Prejudice” 17 times, and Matthew Arnold and John Henry Newman read “Mansfield Park” every year. The historian Thomas Babbington Macaulay read Austen obsessively and, as a colonial administrator in India, wrote letters home comparing various colleagues to characters in “Emma” and “Pride and Prejudice.” None of them are known to have covered the books in plain brown paper.
In fact, Lynch points out, the term “Janeite” — today used somewhat derisively to refer to Austen’s besotted female fans — came into usage in the 1890s thanks to men who wore it like a badge of honor. Kipling’s 1923 story “The Janeites” was about a platoon of British soldiers who use Austen talk to distract themselves from the horror of the trenches. And here’s E. M. Forster, coming out as a “Jane Austenite” in 1924...
- In the children's lit realm, Jezebel discusses the author of popular kids' classic The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
- I've updated my book lists to include how much I've read on EW's "New Classics" list. 25 out of 100, which should be good but I find kinda pathetic.
- K takes on the "controversy" over sexy female author photos.
- the Orange Prize longlist is announced (fiction prize for women, yay). It includes American Wife, A Mercy, and others.
- Man Booker prize (boooring) shortlist ALSO announced.