Library Books

New Books

  • Jane of Austin: A Novel of Sweet Tea and Sensibility
    by Hillary Manton Lodge

    Just a few years after their father's business scandal shatters their lives, Jane and Celia Woodward find themselves forced out of their San Francisco tea shop. When Celia insists on a move to Austin, Texas, the sisters pack up their kid sister Margot and Jane's tea plants, determined to start over yet again.

  • My Jane Austen Summer: A Season in Mansfield Park
    by Cindy Jones

    Lily Berry is a needy, desperately unhappy dreamer who after reading "The Six" (Jane Austen's six major works) has let her affection for dear Jane run wild. She sells off all her possessions, buys a plane ticket to Great Britain, and begs an acting role in a summer literary festival.

  • A Truth Universally Acknowledged: 33 Great Writers on Why We Read Jane Austen
    by Susannah Carson, ed.

    Why are we so fascinated with Jane Austen's novels? Why is Austen so universally beloved? The essayists in this volume offer their thoughts on the delightful puzzle of Austen's popularity.

Jane Austen's Reading

Reading with Jane Austen has created a virtual, information-filled view of the Library of Godmersham Park. "I am now alone in the Library, Mistress of all I survey", wrote Jane Austen, about this library. Godmersham Park was the estate of Jane Austen's brother Edward Austen Knight. Using ingenious graphics, this site let's us sit down at Jane's side and explore with her.

Libraries were not always free.

In Jane Austen's time, readers could pay a subscription to circulating libraries. In effect they rented books. Erin Blakemore gives us insight into how such libraries worked in her online article How Lizzie Bennet Got Her Books.

Jane Austen's Manuscripts

Thanks to the website, Open Culture, we know and can see that Jane Austen used pins to edit her manuscripts. Two links lead to manuscripts from her unfinished novel, The Watsons. All Austen's manuscripts can be viewed in facsimile on the site, Jane Austen's Fiction Manuscripts.

Our Library

At each meeting our library is open to members to borrow materials until the next meeting, with a small fee of 25 cents. To plan your reading in advance, review the Library List. Send an email to JASNA Calgary to request particular books, as our library is now too large to bring all the books to each meeting. If you cannot wait until the next meeting, try the resources of the Calgary Public Library.

Complete Set of Persuasions

Thanks to a donation from Randie, plus our own library, JASNA Calgary now has a complete set of Persuasions, the official journal of the Jane Austen Society of North America. The JASNA website has the table of contents, for each journal. Members can make arrangements to borrow a journal by emailing jasnacalgary@jasnacalgary.ca JASNA Calgary. Persuasions is now published more frequently through its online presence.

Local Books

Once a JASNA Calgary member and scribe, author Samantha Adkins has sadly moved to B.C. We continue to appreciate her writing of Jane Austen themed novels. She first wrote, Expectations, a sequel to Pride and Prejudice, for her sister's birthday.

In Suspiciously Reserved, Samantha invites us to imagine Emma set in present-day Canada. On her blog she describes why she wrote her newest novel, Banff Springs Abbey.

Snippets

New Media Jane Austen

Jane Austen's Manuscripts

If you haven't had the opportunity to see Jane Austen's manuscripts in the British Library, the BBC offers a short
video describing her particular style. Or, watch as a fragment of her handwriting is revealed.

Virginia Woolf's Praise for Jane Austen

Virginia Woolf admired the writing of Jane Austen for many reasons. In A Room of One's Own, she speaks of how difficult it was in previous times, and indeed in her own time, for women to write outside of the male tradition.
"What genius, what integrity it must have required in face of all that criticism in the midst of that purely patriarchal society to hold fast to the thing as they saw it without shrinking. Only Jane Austen did it and Emily Bronte. It is another feather, perhaps the finest, in their caps. They wrote as women write, not as men write. Of all the thousand women who wrote novels, they alone entirely ignored the perpetual admonitions of the eternal pedagogue - write this, think that. They alone were deaf to that persistent voice, now grumbling, now patronising, now domineering, now grieved, now shocked, now angry, now avuncular, that voice which cannot let women alone, but must be at them like some too conscientous governess, adjuring them to be refined."

(A Room of One's Own, Virginia Woolf (Penguin 1945) p.75.)

Satan and Miss Bates

Noted philosopher and scholar, CS Lewis, uses Miss Bates in Emma to help readers better understand Satan in Milton's Paradise Lost.
"Before considering the character of Milton's Satan it may be desirable to remove an ambiguity by noticing that Jane Austen's Miss Bates could be described either as a very entertaining or a very tedious person. If we said the first, we should mean that the author's portrait of her entertains us while we read; if we said the second, we should mean that it does so by being the portrait of a person whom the other people in Emma find tedious and whose like we also should find tedious in real life. For it is a very old critical discovery that the imitation in art of unpleasing objects may be a pleasing imitation.

The Hell [Satan] carries with him is, in one sense a Hell of infinite boredom, Satan, like Miss Bates is interesting to read about; but Milton makes plain the blank uninterestingness of being Satan."

(A Preface to Paradise Lost, CS Lewis (OUP 1942) pp.94,102.)

Contemporaries on Jane Austen

Jane Austen Jane Austen's Family and Friends

Sir Walter Scott Sir Walter Scott

Charlotte Bronte Charlotte Bronte

Obituary for Jane Austen

The Gentleman's Magazine of July 18, 1817 carried this announcement of Jane Austen's death.

Austen recognized as author of four novels