Former leading New Zealand publisher and bookseller, and widely experienced judge of both the Commonwealth Writers Prize and the Montana New Zealand Book Awards, talks about what he is currently reading, what impresses him and what doesn't, along with chat about the international English language book scene, and links to sites of interest to booklovers.
Monday, September 28, 2015
Why Jane Austen enchants us to this day
Great novels do not need a backdrop of emotional disaster – four families in a village will do the trick
Anne Hathaway stars as Jane Austen in the film Becoming Jane
"People love Jane Austen even though those books are absurd to us because we like the clarity of it; we can see very clearly what Elizabeth Bennet has to overcome, what she has to deal with.” So said a great writer this week and – as Austen herself would always graciously defer to an elder brother, so shall I – he was, of course, correct. Nick Hornby went on to say: “In this century, where actually well-heeled people can do whatever the hell they want whenever they want, it’s more chaotic to extract a narrative.”
That’s why he now enjoys writing period pieces, and believes that we, the audience, find stories from the past so satisfying. More