Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict


August 20, 2009 by Marj Hatzell

I have this teensy little problem. I’m a Jane Austen addict.  I like her stories so much that I cannot read modern literature because nothing compares. I’d rather just read Austen novels over and over and over. And over.  And sometimes I’ll read the Bronte sisters. And other classic novels. But mostly just Austen.

Lucky me!  They make tons of adaptations of Jane Austen novels.  A&E and PBS has a field day with them.  I’ve seen many a version of Sense and Sensibility, Mansfield Park (Frances O’Connor was best), Emma and Pride and Prejudice.  I’ve even seen the Bollywood and Mormon version of Pride and Prejudice (I tolerated the Kiera Knightly version. It was…tolerable).   I’ve seen Clueless, like, hundreds of times (did you know that was an adaptation of Emma?) and ashamedly have seen Gwyneth Paltrow in her wretched version of Emma dozens of times (Kate Beckinsale’s was far better, IMHO).  My favorites, of course, are the Masterpiece Theater versions. Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle in Pride and Prejudice was to die for.  But don’t tell anyone.

I was lucky to catch a neat series the other night called, “Lost in Austen.”    It was a strange take on the original story, kinda had a “Pleasantville” vibe to it. The main character, Amanda Price, was transported into the story and Elizabeth Bennet was transported out and all kinds of crazy ensued.  Turns out you can order this mini series. From the UK.  So I don’t know if the format will work, but I’m gonna try.

If you are a hardcore fan like I am, you’ll also be pleased to know that a movie called, “Jane Austen Handheld, ” a spoof on Pride and Prejudice (is this her most popular one or what?) is currently in production (as is Sense and Sensibilidad or From Prada to Nada, a Latino version set in El Lay).  Of course, this does not excuse the fact that I still have not seen Becoming Jane or The Jane Austen Book Club (HATED THAT BOOK!  WITH A FIERY PASSION OF A THOUSAND SUNS!).  But now that I know it exists, I will be looking for Kandukondain Kandukondain (Bollywood’s Sense and Sensibility).

Yeah, it’s a sickness.

ETA:  I just found Pride and Prejudice and Zombies…for some reason, I think I must read this.

5 thoughts on “Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict

  1. Melanie says:

    I just finished Emma again myself! I have seen the Jane Austen book club and it wasn’t bad, but I have not read the book, I think they changed from the book somewhat. It didn’t really focus on any of the Austen books, just mentioned them, so really I didn’t take it like it was about the books.

  2. feefifoto says:

    I feel the same way about modern fiction. It’s so contrived. I got so sick of preposterous plot twists that I gave up reading fiction a couple years ago and I’m much happier. Now I read histories and memoirs (right now I’m finishing Rising from the Rails, a history of the Pullman porters), and, yes, Austen. Have you seen the Annotated Pride and Prejudice? You might also enjoy What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew: From Fox Hunting to Whist-The Facts of Daily Life in Nineteenth-Century England

  3. Too funny. As I was reading I was thinking, I have to tell her about the zombie version!
    I haven’t read it but, like you, feel strangely compelled.

  4. Emmie says:

    Lost in Austen was great!! I watched it *cough*online somehow*cough* when it aired in the UK last year.
    If you ordered and it’s a region 2 you’ll a dvd player that can play it. There are ways to remedy that by making your dvd player region free(google). If all else fails, I think PSP/wii’s may be able to play them.

    And did you know Bridget Jones Diary(the first one) is a take on P&P? And there’s a book called “Pride Prejudice & Jasmine Field” that’s a take on it.
    So yes, I’m addicted too! It’s a great club to be in
    PS–when you find the Bollywood S&S, please let me know!!

  5. Janie says:

    Please don’t shoot me, but I have never read any Jane Austen! You’ve convinced me now. I’m off to the library!

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