Alexander McCall Smith’s Emma reboot coming soon to The Austen Project!

Alexander McCall Smith's Emma reboot - a tribute to Jane Austen's original novel
Alexander McCall Smith’s Emma reboot – a tribute to Jane Austen’s original novel.

Well, it looks like the wait’s a-shrinking for the Emma reboot by famed mystery novelist Alexander McCall Smith. This Jane Austen retelling is coming to the UK, Australia, and New Zealand in early November. According to Amazon.com, preorders are open for the US edition, scheduled to release in April.

Here’s the novel teaser from the official “The Austen Project” website:

Fresh from university, Emma Woodhouse arrives home in Norfolk ready to embark on adult life with a splash. Not only has her sister, Isabella, been whisked away on a motorbike to London, but her astute governess, Miss Taylor is at a loose end watching as Mr. Woodhouse worries about his girls. Someone is needed to rule the roost and young Emma is more than happy to oblige.

At the helm of her own dinner parties, and often found either rearranging the furniture at the family home of Hartfield, or instructing her new protégée, Harriet Smith, Emma is in charge. You don’t have to be in London to go to parties, find amusement or make trouble. Not if you’re Emma, the very big fish in the rather small pond.

But for someone who knows everything, Emma doesn’t know her own heart. And there is only one person who can play with Emma’s indestructible confidence, her friend and inscrutable neighbour George Knightly – this time has Emma finally met her match?

Jane Austen illustrations from the British Library

Technology is awesome. This week, it’s particularly awesome because I learned that the British Library has used it to post a whole mess of nifty illustrations from beloved classic editions of Jane Austen’s novels to its Flikr stream.

Some of these Austen illustrations include Irish Illustrator Hugh Thomson’s famous line drawings for Macmillan’s 1896 edition of Emma, represented below by Mr. Knightley’s proposal.

Hugh Thomson Illustration from Emma
Hugh Thomson illustration for Jane Austen’s Emma: Mr. Knightley proposes.

For more from and about iconic illustrated Austen works, peruse the following:

 

A “modern” Emma by Alexander McCall Smith…

Writer Alexander McCall Smith – creator of the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency mysteries  – is working on a contemporary adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma for HarperFiction’s Austen Project.

“Writing a contemporary version of Emma is both a privilege and a real challenge,” the author said. “Not only is Emma one of the finest novels in the English language, but it is possibly Jane Austen’s most thought-provoking and interesting book.”

According to HarperFiction,

The Austen Project pairs six bestselling contemporary authors with Jane Austen’s six complete works: Sense & Sensibility, Northanger Abbey, Pride & Prejudice, Emma, Persuasion and Mansfield Park. Taking these well-loved stories as their base, each author will write their own unique take on Jane Austen’s novels.

Continue reading “A “modern” Emma by Alexander McCall Smith…”

“Emma Approved” premiers!

Joanna Sotomura as Emma
Joanna Sotomura as Emma.

The first Youtube installment of Emma Approved hit the web today. In the premier webisode of this multimedia adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma, we meet our eponymous heroine, a bubbly, self-described lifestyle expert and blogger. We discover her professional raisons d’etre and meet her button-down Highbury Partners colleague/buddy, Alex Knightley, and her friend/client, Annie Taylor.

After just a few minutes, Emma fans will swiftly figure out where things are headed…

Continue reading ““Emma Approved” premiers!”

Emma Approved: Another Austen-inspired web serial

Emma Approved
Emma Approved premiers October 7!

If you enjoyed The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, an interactive online media series adapted from Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice, you’ll be over the moon about Emma Approved. Based on Austen’s Emma, this one’s produced by the very same team that  brought you Diaries and Welcome to Sanditon.

Continue reading “Emma Approved: Another Austen-inspired web serial”

Paul Gordon’s Emma is back onstage – in Arizona!

Anneliese Van der Pol as Emma Woodhouse
Anneliese Van der Pol as Emma Woodhouse.

Paul Gordon’s stage version of Jane Austen’s Emma is back, continuing its 2012-2013 run at the Arizona Theatre Company through January 20. It looks like a very lavish production, starring television and Broadway actress Anneliese Van der Pol as Emma Woodhouse.

The show ran in Tucson from December 1-22, resuming this week in Phoenix. If you live in Arizona, why not ring in the new year with some Emma?

More information on Emma in Arizona:

 

Presentation copy of Jane Austen’s Emma for sale…again!

Anne Sharp's Copy of Emma
Anne Sharp’s Copy of Emma, from Sotheby’s.

I was kind of avoiding this because I thought it might’ve been a bad case of necrolink, but apparently it’s true: Anne Sharp’s presentation copy of Jane Austen’s Emma is indeed for sale…again. It last sold at auction in April, 2010 for the then pounds sterling-equivalent of $271,294.

The set of three volumes is one of twelve special first edition copies – “presentation” copies as they’re called – reserved for Austen’s family, friends, and her highest-profile fan of the period, the Prince Regent (care of his royal librarian, James Stanier Clarke). Anne Sharp is often noted as the only “friend” among the bunch of recipients. Miss Sharp had served as governess to Austen’s beloved niece, Fanny Knight, and by most accounts is the logical model for the Woodhouse girls’ dear former governess, Mrs. Weston, in Emma. Continue reading “Presentation copy of Jane Austen’s Emma for sale…again!”

Link: Dear Mr. Knightley…

It’s come to my attention that Mr. George Knightley of Jane Austen’s Emma fame is now authoring his own advice blog, titled Letters to Mr. Knightley! With help from colleagues and friends, he’ll be dispensing his wit and wisdom on life and love to the denizens of Highbury, the Internet, and beyond. Here’s a man I’d trust with any problem!

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