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      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
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frankie

Longbourn by Jo Baker

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My friend just told me about this book, assuming I'd already heard about it, so I was rather amazed when search on this on here only produced one mention by Kidsmum...  :o This being Jane Austen fan fiction, in a way!

 

 

Longbourn by Jo Baker

 

From Amazon:

 

The servants of the Bennett estate manage their own set of dramas in this vivid re-imagining of Pride and Prejudice. While the marriage
prospects of the Bennett girls preoccupy the family upstairs, downstairs the housekeeper Mrs. Hill has her hands full managing the staff that keeps Longbourn running smoothly: the young housemaids, Sarah and Polly; the butler, Mr. Hill; and the mysterious new footman, James Smith, who bears a secret connection to Longbourn.

 

[...]

 

A must-read for fans of Austen, this literary tribute also stands on its own as a captivating love story.

 

 

Personally I'm quite intrigued, but I'm not sure if I would buy a copy... I think I would borrow it from the library if it was available.

 

 

Anyone else interested? :)

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I've definitely chatted about this with Claire .. might have been on a pm though  :blush2:  I think she said she intends to read it as part of her Jane Austen challenge. I'm interested too though don't always like sequels/prequels/tributes .. will wait to see what the general consensus is. It does sound intriguing though and the reviews so far are favourable :)

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I did think of chesilbeach and her Austen challenge when I heard of the book... :) And I did think surely people know about the book, but I just thought it was curious nobody had started a topic on it.

 

This was published 8.10, according to Amazon so the book's out and about and available... We'll see who's the first one to have read the book, and spill the beans: was it good or not :D

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The reviews for Joanna Trollope's re-working of Sense & Sensibility aren't good but it's early days. Somehow I don't fancy it as much as this one :shrug: 

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I think we picked it up and looked at it in Waterstone's last time we met up, Kay.  I do intend to read it at some point, but then I'm still only partway through Death Comes To Pemberley!  I'll probably wait until it comes down in price a bit before I get it.

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My friend just told me about this book, assuming I'd already heard about it, so I was rather amazed when search on this on here only produced one mention by Kidsmum...  :o This being Jane Austen fan fiction, in a way!    

 

That's right Frankie i mentioned it on Willoyd's thread. :smile:  I heard about Longbourn from the librarian that runs our book group & then just by chance i discovered that Jo Baker was coming to talk about her book at the Morley Literature Festival.  She was interviewed ( not sure if that's the right word for it) by a lecturer from Leeds university who is a bit of an expert on Jane Austen, it was a really interesting talk & i  want to read the book which was for sale at the event but as it's only out in hardback at the moment it was a bit pricey. Our lovely librarian is going to try & get it for our book group so fingers crossed i wont have too long to wait  :D

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 What a great librarian you have! :) And that's so great that very coincidentally Jo Baker came to the literature festival and was interviewed. How often does that happen :D That is so great that you had a chance to witness that! :) I hope you get copies for your book group, I'll be keeping my fingers crossed! :) 

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I knew about this one but forgot about it. It interests me greatly.  

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I think we picked it up and looked at it in Waterstone's last time we met up, Kay.  I do intend to read it at some point, but then I'm still only partway through Death Comes To Pemberley!  I'll probably wait until it comes down in price a bit before I get it.

I bought Death Comes To Pemberley for my Kindle. Was very mixed about how I felt really. It's never very successful when somebody from this time period tries to imitate not only another time period but another writer, a double whammy.I felt it was just about ok but would never re-read it.

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I bought Death Comes To Pemberley for my Kindle. Was very mixed about how I felt really. It's never very successful when somebody from this time period tries to imitate not only another time period but another writer, a double whammy.I felt it was just about ok but would never re-read it.

 

I felt very similar about Death Comes To Permberley gardengirl. I enjoyed it at the time (and gave it far too high a rating than it deserved) just because I was reading about those same favourite characters again but the feeling quickly wore off after I had finished.

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I bought Death Comes To Pemberley for my Kindle. Was very mixed about how I felt really. It's never very successful when somebody from this time period tries to imitate not only another time period but another writer, a double whammy.I felt it was just about ok but would never re-read it.

 

It's worth noting that Longbourn isn't quite that genre. Jo Baker doesn't try to imitate Austen - she takes a completely different viewpoint, looking at the story of the Bennets from the angle of the servants who are virtually ignored in the original. So it hopefully avoids the pitfalls that I agree are so prevalent when trying to follow-on from an author, particularly someone so prominent and distinctive as Austen.

 

BTW, Longbourn is now out in paperback. It was in the buy one get one half price deal at Waterstones earlier this week.  I've just bought it (not in the deal!), and am looking forward to reading it soon.

Edited by willoyd

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I'm about 100 pages into Longbourn at the moment & really enjoying it. The friend who leant it too me said that she couldn't feel the same affection for the Bennetts after reading it so maybe it should come with a warning on the cover  :smile:

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I'm about 100 pages into Longbourn at the moment & really enjoying it. The friend who leant it too me said that she couldn't feel the same affection for the Bennetts after reading it so maybe it should come with a warning on the cover  :smile:

 

I haven't read it, but it's definitely on my wish list, however, I'd recommend to your friend to read Letters to Alice on First Reading Jane Austen by Fay Weldon (I know willoyd and vodkafan have also recommended it elsewhere) and I think her affection, particularly for Mrs Bennet, may return.  It really gives you a very different viewpoint on the novels, and what the characters would have been going through in a real life situation in that period.  Failing that, just watch the BBC adaptation again, and I'm sure Colin, Jennifer and the rest of the cast can work wonders! :D

Edited by chesilbeach

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Good idea i shall recommend it to her, i read it a few years ago after Ruth reviewed it on her book log & it did make me look at Mrs Bennett in a different light   :smile:

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BTW, Longbourn is now out in paperback. It was in the buy one get one half price deal at Waterstones earlier this week.  I've just bought it (not in the deal!), and am looking forward to reading it soon.

 

I hope you enjoy it! :) Let us know what you made of it, if you remember!

 

I'm about 100 pages into Longbourn at the moment & really enjoying it. The friend who leant it too me said that she couldn't feel the same affection for the Bennetts after reading it so maybe it should come with a warning on the cover  :smile:

 

I'm happy to hear you are enjoying it! :) I don't think a new novel and perspective would change my views on the Bennetts, so I'm not all too nervous about that, but I do appreciate the warning :)

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I'm waiting impatiently to get "Longborn" from my Library. It sounds very interesting, but working-life must have been pretty tough for the staff, with all those women in the household!

 

Imagine the laundry and ironing challenges! :o

 

Anyone finished it yet?

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I finished it Book Nutt & really enjoyed it, i put a review on my Reading Log  :smile:

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Longbourn is absolutely wonderful. Although it uses the characters of the original novel I agree with gardengirl that they are interpreted in such a creative way that it could easily be a novel in its own right. Looking at the characters through the eyes of the servants gives a new dimension and the details of life below stairs really bring their hardships to life.

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