News for Austen Enthusiasts : November 2023
Jane Austen’s personal copy of book to go up for auctionThough there is no doubt that Austen herself was a reader as well as a writer, we don’t actually have a thorough record of the books she herself owned - only twenty have been confirmed. One of these is Isaac D’Israeli’s Curiosities of Literature. Austen’s personal copy of this text, which contains annotations and underlinings from the author herself, is soon to go up for auction. You’ll need deep pockets if you’d like to nab it, though - it’s expected to sell for £80k-120k
New Jane Austen memorial may receive council funding
Proposals to erect a statue of Jane Austen at her final resting place of Winchester Cathedral may be about to get one step closer to realisation. The plans, which will see the new memorial to the author installed at the Cathedral, are expected to cost around £100k, with £73k already raised. The Cathedral hope to secure a further £10k from the council to push them a little closer to reaching their goal.
JASNA Conference courts young readers
This November, our friends at the Jane Austen Society of North America got together to discuss all things Pride and Prejudice. Many of the talks and discussions centred around introducing Austen to a younger audience of teens, and how we might go about engaging a new generation.
Chawton to recreate Emma’s Randalls Christmas
If you’ve been looking for an immersive Christmas experience, here’s an idea! Jane Austen’s house in Chawton are running a special Christmas installation, replicating Emma’s experience of being snowed in at Randalls. Guests will be able to walk room-to-room, taking in the sights and sounds of the Randalls experience.
New Puffin editions of Austen’s work available for preorder
You may have seen Puffin’s beautiful ‘in Bloom’ editions in bookshops before, but now they’re adding Austen to their collection. Emma, Pride and Prejudice and Sensibility, in their new gorgeous florals, will be released this coming February, just in time for Valentine’s day.
Prophet Song scoops Booker
Another huge literary prize was announced this month, with Paul Lynch’s Prophet Song scooping the Booker Prize. The novel, which has been described as a ‘triumph of emotional storytelling’, tells the story of a Republic of Ireland which slips into dystopian totalitarianism.We’ll be adding this one to our Christmas lists.
First Nero Book Awards shortlists announced
When it was announced that the Costa Prize was no longer going to be running, we were devastated, so we were thrilled to see Caffe Nero taking up the gauntlet of running a popular prize. Now, they have announced their first shortlist, with categories in Children’s, Debut, Fiction and Non-Fiction. The category winners will be announced in mid-January 2024, with the overall winner named in February.
As always, we would love to know if we have missed anything, as well as all your thoughts on the news!
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