Posted by: rearadmiral | November 3, 2013

“Making Masterpiece” by Rebecca Eaton

“Making Masterpiece” by Rebecca Eaton

Being a Masterpiece fan since way back when, I was really looking forward to this book when I heard about it. I went to GBH Tuesday for a talk about it and a book signing(alas, not able to buy it). On Wednesday, the book arrived from the library!! Timing! I was not disappointed. As with a great Masterpiece program, this book took me on an highly interesting journey interweaving Rebecca Eaton’s life and the life of Masterpiece. I especially enjoyed that when Masterpiece’s fortunes were at a low ebb, who saved the day but Jane Austen!!!!!!

5 Regency Teacups -Kirk

“But Erin Delaney, one of our producers and a “smart girl” who had spent many hours of her early years marinating in Jane Austen, knew perfectly well that Jane had written only six books in her lifetime. Why not put them together on television and, for the very first time, air them all at once?
Why not, indeed? We took Erin’s advice and branded those six weeks ‘The Complete Jane Austen’. We joined up with the Jane Austen Society of North America(JASNA) to get the word out, and a more fervent and messianic group of English majors you’ve never met. Did you know that JASNA has 4,500 members and a huge database? Neither did we.” -Rebecca Eaton “Making Masterpiece”

I had a delightful twittter chat a few days ago with the brilliant @mcsullivan
@sarahmseltzer @DeborahYaffe @Sarah_Emsley about modern Sense and Sensibility sequels. -Kirk

I love the reviewer’s comment below about Austen sees characters as prisms. -Kirk

“And she can’t keep a secret. We get to find out a crucial fact about Colonel Brandon at the beginning, one that Austen had saved until near the end. This cancels the pleasure in the reader’s shifting opinion of the character. It is like Austen sees characters as prisms, and as you read, the prism keeps moving, and you keep seeing the character in new and surprising lights.” -Paula Green

“She knew exactly what she was doing. Perfection is not obtained by blundering, and even if it were, to blunder into perfection in six consecutive works would be inconceivable.” Walter Allen

“The Crawfords, brother and sister, come from London. They are young, vigorous, and consecrated to the future, to change, and to movement. Jane Austen is sometimes thought of as a writer who neglected the history she was born into, but the confrontation between the Crawfords and the Bertrams-standing in for the much larger social revolution that raged in England between traditionalists and modernists-proves that she registered, and with great accuracy, the social and economic rhythms of her times. The Crawfords are attractive and compelling, but morally empty. -Carol Shields introduction to The Modern Library Classics version of Mansfield Park

202 years ago today, Jane Austen’s novel Sense and Sensibility was published under the pseudonym “A Lady”.

“No indeed, I am never too busy to think of S & S. I can no more forget it, than a mother can forget her sucking child.”

~ Jane Austen

“The Bertram family, clinging to tradition and isolated in the deep countryside, are not much changed by Fanny’s presence, but they are wildly awakened by the arrival in the neighborhood of Henry and Mary Crawford…..The Crawfords are attractive and compelling, but morally empty.” – Carol Shields introduction to The Modern Library Classics version of Mansfield Park
Another “winning” comment from Joanna Trollope! While I’m not a huge fan of fantasy lit….one fantasy novel I read as a teen will never leave me. (hmmm, should I reread it after so many yrs?) -Kirk



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